About me

Embarrassing my daughter by pretending to be a statue; Pompeii, 2007.

Super-fast bio.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, raised in Southbridge, Massachusetts. My grandmother was a painter; she started teaching me composition when I was a toddler. B.A. in Art History and Asian Studies at Vassar College, 1989. Studied Japanese language and woodblock printing at Nanzan University in Nagoya, Japan, 1988. After a brief period at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, worked as a temp in Boston, then in San Francisco, then as an antiquarian book dealer in San Francisco, got married in 1992, and then earned a master's degree in Landscape Architecture and Historic Preservation at the University of Virginia in 1997. I've practiced landscape architecture on Mount Desert Island since 1998. I have two kids, both teenagers, who I am only allowed to photograph and about whom I am only allowed to write when granted specific and limited permission. Probably wise of them.

About the Beachcombing series:

I’ve lived in Bar Harbor for 16 years (as of 2013) and wander down to the shoreline every chance I get. About three years ago I started photographing the things I find on the beach. The photos quickly became a series documenting the things I found on a particular beach on a particular day: the title of each photo is the name of the beach and the date on which I found those objects.  Originally I thought of these as abstract beach portraits and used them to articulate my curiosity about the things I was finding. Over the years, they have begun to incorporate my growing understanding of the ways both humans and marine life colonize the littoral zone. When I started doing public shows I realized that for other people, a lot of the Beachcombing series' appeal is nostalgia. When I really do capture the texture of a mussel or the color of a sea urchin, it's a tactile reminder for viewers of their own days on the beach and the things they found.  Each person has had their own moment of connection with the objects in the photos, and these photos, which begin as a record of my own exploration, become a vehicle for their memories of exploration. I'm still looking for something profound in that. 

Other stuff about the work:

You've probably noticed, but I'm fascinated by the intersection of science and art, and that applies in all my work at all scales, from engineered landscapes to slightly obsessive still life photographs. Now that I think about it, I'm a bit obsessive at all scales, too. I'm also fascinated by the "whys" behind things, which I often explore in this blog. As in "why does this seaweed feel hard and brittle?" and "why is some frost flat and other frost spiky?" and "why are my children's possessions strewn across every horizontal surface?" I've yet to base a work on that last question, but I'm pretty sure it has something to do with chaos theory...

And to finish off, here's an interview with me on the Buy Some Damn Art website, which I think is about as funny and interesting as I get.

Phew, enough about me, now, tell me about yourself! C'mon, down there in the comments, who's reading all this?

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