Bios of Presenters

Ping Chong (keynote artist) is an internationally acclaimed theatre director, playwright, video installation artist, and pioneer in the use of media in the theater. In his 39 year career in the theater, he has been a restless explorer of new possibilities and new directions, always pushing at the boundaries of what theater is and can be. Mr. Chong’s work has been presented at major festivals and theatres around the world including: The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Lincoln Center Festival, Brooklyn Academy of Music, La MaMa E.T.C, the Under the Radar Festival, Spoleto USA Festival, the Seattle Repertory Theatre, the New Victory Theater, the Barbican Centre, Vienna Festival, RomaEuropa Festival, Tokyo International Arts Festival, Singapore Festival of the Arts, and many others. In 1992, Ping Chong created the first work in the Undesirable Elements series of community-based oral history projects. Since then there have been over 40 productions around the world. His 2005 puppet theatre production, Cathay: Three Tales of China, created with the Shaanxi Folk Art Theater of Xian, China, was chosen as one of the top 10 productions of the 2005 season by NY Theatre Wire, and received 3 Henry Hewes Design Awards by the New York Theatre Wing. Among his many honors and awards, he has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, a USA Artist Fellowship, two BESSIE awards and two OBIE awards, including one for sustained Achievement in 2000. Theatre Communications Group published his first collection of plays, The East-West Quartet, in 2005 and will publish a book dedicated to Undesirable Elements in 2012.  His stage adaptation of Akira Kurosawa’s Throne of Blood premiered at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in July 2010 with performances in BAM’s Next Wave Festival that Fall and received Falstaff Awards for best direction and adaptation. He is currently remounting his 1985 production The Angels of Swedenborg for LaMaMa’s 50th Anniversary in October 2011. Cry for Peace:Voices from the Congo will premiere at Syracuse Stage in September 2012 and tour thereafter.

denisse andrade is a (media)maker, curator, educator and activist whose practice tends to be collaborative. Originally from Colombia, she resides in New York City.

Kenneth Bailey, ds4si Sector Organizing and Strategy Lead, started his activism in the early eighties as a teenager, working in his neighborhood for tenants’ rights and decent housing, targeting the St. Louis Housing Authority. He went on to work for COOL, a national campus-based student organizing program, and then moved to Boston where he worked for the Ten Point Coalition, Interaction Institute for Social Change, and Third Sector New England, as well as being on the Board for Resource Generation. He co-founded ds4si in January 2005; for the 2005-2006 academic year he incubated the studio within the Center for Reflective Community Practice in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning.

The Beehive Design Collective is an all-volunteer, non-profit, art-activist collective based in Machias, Maine. Formed in 2000, we work anonymously as word-to-image translators of complex global stories, gathered through conversations with affected communities. We annually engage over 250 audiences with interactive picture-lectures and workshops that use our illustrations as political education tools. A committed group of mostly women, we are working to create holistic, accessible, and educational images and spaces that inspire critical reflection and strategic action.

Anne Beffel is an artist and Associate Professor at Syracuse University where she teaches Introduction to Time Arts and is developing a course entitled Contemplative Arts and Society. As an artist, she reaches out to a variety of viewer-participants in order to raise questions about social justice. Points of inspiration include apologies that have been offered, withheld, rejected and accepted in relation to war, discrimination, and vulnerability; the possibilities of “mirroring” in the years following September 11th; and the surprising potential offered by sharing non-aggressive points of view in a war torn world.
Beffel has reached out to viewer-participants across social, economic and geographical divides within contexts as diverse as Lower Manhattan’s South Street Seaport Mall; the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Studio; the World Financial Center; Saint John’s Benedictine monastery in rural Minnesota; and New York Downtown Hospital and surrounding streets, offices, and community centers.   She gives her attention to the effects of the dominant cultural values on the lives of individuals, and attempts to reveal the important role individual actions and conversations play in shaping cultural values.

Rick Benjamin is a poet, teacher, and activist who lives and works in Providence, RI.  He is a faculty member at Goddard College in the MFA-IA program.

Big Car is an Indianapolis, Indiana based collective of 30 visual artists, writers, musicians, filmmakers and thinkers who work together to explore the notions of people and place and the unique aspects of community that connect them. Its Made for Each Other social-practice public-art initiative engages non-art people in the planning, creating and celebration community-building projects — bridging gaps between art, artists, art institutions and other large institutions and residents of Indianapolis as a way to creatively improve (even if only in little ways) the quality of life for all. Big Car strives to create projects that are inclusive, interactive, thought provoking and dynamic. It has shown work and has performed multiple times at the Indianapolis Museum of Art and at galleries and spaces in the Midwest. Big Car frequently collaborates with a variety of non-art institutions including schools and hospitals and prefers to take projects into neighborhoods and locations frequented by people who don’t often attend arts events. Learn more at

Karin Bolender
‘s work explores interspecies intimacies, within rural landscapes (all the faunal, floral, and mineral forms that inhabit them) and human acts of metaphor, memory, and imagination. Grounded in both poetics and performance-art traditions, her collaborative projects include journeys through the American South with two American Spotted she-Asses, Aliass and Passenger, and other companions of various persuasions. She is presently at work reestablishing her Rural Alchemy Workshop (R.A.W.) in a radically different landscape, having just moved with the whole ass family from Carnesville, Georgia to Orland, California in mid-September 2011.

Danielle Boutet is a music composer and interdisciplinary artist, founder and first director (1997-2008) of the MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts Program at Goddard. She is currently full-time professor-researcher at the Université du Québec à Rimouski, where her research subjects are the artistic experience, the creative process and art making as a way of knowing. Boutet is a consultant on questions of interdisciplinarity in the arts and a participant in the international transdisciplinary movement.
Her artistic work—music, writing and fine arts—explores states of consciousness and artistic epistemologies. It is an intentional experiment in modes of expression and of being. It explores the material/spiritual modes by which revelation occurs: in fine art, it explores especially the materiality of languages and systems of representation, and in music, the spatiality and qualification of time. Her philosophical and PhD work looks into questions of artistic epistemology (what the artist knows through art making and the nature of this knowledge).

Ecological artist Jackie Brookner collaborates internationally with communities, policy makers, design professionals, ecologists, and engineers on water remediation/ public art projects for parks, wetlands, rivers, and stormwater runoff.  Her Biosculpture™ projects in Salo, Finland (2009), San Jose CA (2008), Cincinnati, OH (2009 ), West Palm Beach, FL (2005); and near Dresden, Germany (2002) are living water filtration systems that restore habitat, reclaim polluted water and create multifunctional public spaces.  Her large-scale participatory remediation art projects are designed to help people reconnect with the places in which they live and to activate collective creative agency as people work together to develop viable strategies where regenerative cultures and ecologies can meet.  “The Fargo Project,” in which Brookner is collaborating with the city and residents of Fargo ND was awarded a 2011 inaugural “Our Town” grant from the NEA.
Brookner has extensive experience with public process and working with community members and stakeholders. In 2002-3, she and Susan Steinman won the NEA/National Park Service “Art and Community Landscapes” commission to work closely with local communities in 3 towns in the Pacific Northwest providing conceptual planning assistance on stream daylighting, restoration and trail projects, and designing public art.  In her museum exhibitions in the 1990’s: “Native Tongues” at The Miro Foundation in Barcelona, Spain and “Of Earth and Cotton,” that traveled throughout the southern United States, Brookner developed oral history strategies to explore how regional cultures and landscapes shape each other.
Brookner was Guest Editor of the 1992 Art Journal issue, “Art and Ecology. ” Her essays can be found in Cultures and Settlements, in LA China, in M/E/A/N/I/N/G, in Natural Reality/Artistic Positions Between Nature and Culture.  Brookner has taught at Harvard Univ., the Univ. of Pennsylvania, and Parsons School of Design, where she currently teaches.  The book “Urban Rain,” published by ORO editions, 2009 provides a survey of Brookner’s work.  She lives in New York City.

Wendy Coburn is an Associate Professor at OCAD U in the Faculty of Art where she teaches first-year, sculpture and interdisciplinary courses. She has held a number of academic posts in the Faculty of Art including Acting Dean, Associate Dean, Assistant Dean for the Criticism & Curatorial Practice, Integrated Media and Sculpture/Installation programs and Acting Assistant Dean Studio Management. As Assistant Dean she led curriculum development for a new Criticism & Curatorial Practice Program and, in partnership with the Laidlaw Foundation shepherded the introduction of two Community Arts courses, promoting community outreach and alternative models for art production. Coburn served as Co-Chair with Richard Fung on OCAD’s Employment and Educational Equity Task Force and continues to work on the Equity and Diversity Committee in the Faculty of Art. Coburn developed and teaches Canada’s first LGBTQ Studio course, fostering research and peer support for studio production in the areas of sexuality, gender and LGBTQ issues. Coburn’s sculpture and video work has been included in such exhibitions and screenings as Photophobia, produced through the Art Gallery of Hamilton, MIX, the New York City Gay & Lesbian Experimental Film & Video Festival, Transmediale.03, International Media Art Festival in Berlin, the Beaver Tales exhibition at Oakville Galleries, the Kassler Documentary Film & Video Festival in Kassel Germany and the Dublin Lesbian & Gay Film and Video Festival.

Lynne Constantine and Suzanne Scott have co-taught “Art as Social Action” at George Mason University since 2003. Lynne is Assistant Professor in the School of Art. She holds an MA and an MPhil from Yale University and has taken advanced coursework in visual culture and feminist theory.  Suzanne, a Goddard alum, holds an MA in English Literature from James Madison University and an MFA in Interdisciplinary Art from Goddard College. She is Associate Professor in Integrative Studies and Director of the Women and Gender Studies Program.

Jordan Dalton is a media practitioner, experimental geographer, fish listener, urban gardener, and environmental activist. His work explores sound as a tool for scientific and community participatory research, ecologies, and the situated use of media to educate and activate. He is part of the Clean Air Coalition of WNY’s Lois Gibbs Fellowship.

Cameron Davis is a Full Time Lecturer with the University of Vermont’s Department of Art and Art History, where she teaches painting and drawing. She is also an Adjunct Lecturer with the University of Vermont’s Environmental Program where she teaches interdisciplinary courses on art, ecology and community.
Davis’ paintings, installations, and community art projects, explore issues of the environment and living consciously at this Eaarth-time. Davis’ work seeks to understand and reflect the role consciousness and the new sciences play in forming cultural frameworks that reweave relational and participatory ecological perspectives. Her work uses imagery taken from various sources: Hindu/yogic practices, Buddhism, Earth based traditions, and the new sciences, paired with abstraction that corresponds to the felt and sensed. In this way Davis attempts to reveal our embedded existence within a whole living system, reweaving relational and participatory ecological perspectives and identity.

The Design Studio for Social Intervention (ds4si) is a space for artists, activists, academics and other social interventionists to reframe, reimagine, and reinvigorate the possibilities of the non-profit sector. We initiate creative research and development projects about what could be and how the yet imagined could lead to deep social change. We bring artistic, designerly and activist ways of knowing together to imagine new ways to solve social problems. And we design and test social interventions as a way to highlight this particular approach to social change.

Dr. Charlene Désir is a the co-founder and director of The Empowerment Network, (T.E.N.),Global, a mentoring and enrichment non-profit  that supports the academic, social, and psychological development of disenfranchised women and children in the U.S. and Haiti. Dr. Désir’s academic interest is in the social adjustment of immigrant students in public schools, specifically school’s social curriculum, social trauma occurring in schools, and how social issues affect cognitive ability. Dr. Désir has presented various papers on the topic of immigrant students and their adjustment to the U.S. She has also published on the topic of immigrant identity, spirituality, and becoming a reflective researcher. Presently, she is the vice president of the Haitian Studies Association, a 23-year academic professional group that supports Haitian scholarship.  Dr. Désir has worked as a school psychologist, K-12 school counselor, school administrator in Massachusetts district and charter schools and a college professor.  She is on the research faculty at the Fischler School of Education at Nova Southeastern University.

Matthew Driggs is an artist, curator and professor who lives and works in Los Angeles. Formerly a curator at RAID Projects, Exhibition Designer at the University of Southern California’s Fisher Museum, and a curator at  Edward Giardiana Contemporary Art, he is currently an adjunct professor at Cypress College.  Matthew has exhibited his work at national and international venues that include:  Kyubidou Gallery, Tokyo, Japan; Vegabond, Alaska, USA; MOP (Modes of Production) Sydney, Australia; Cynthia Broan, New York, USA; Laguna Beach Museum of Art, CA, USA; and Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, USA.

Janeil Engelstad’s public and community art projects have given voice to some of the most important issues of our times, including youth and gang violence, homelessness, peace, and ecology. Working in partnership with foundations, universities, government agencies, NGOs, and major corporations her work has led to and created positive environmental and social change in communities throughout the world.
An innovative photographer, artist, educator and curator, Ms. Engelstad’s work has been exhibited in museums and galleries. Her projects have been broadcast on television and radio and featured in books and in publications, such as Art News, Metropolis, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, and The Los Angeles Times. Guns + Violence, a project that she co-produced with New York based graphic design firm World Studio, was selected for the prestigious “ID Forty” award, an annual listing of leading innovators in design by ID: The Magazine of International Design.
Her project, Voices From the Center, documented people’s reflections about life during and after communism in an interactive web-based project that also included exhibitions and discussions at art centers throughout Central Europe and the United States. The project included photographs and interviews with performing and visual artists, villagers, former dissidents and other people from Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic. For many of the participants this was the first opportunity to publicly speak about their lives before and after the fall of the Berlin Wall.
In 2010 she founded Make Art With Purpose (MAP) an innovative organization that partners with artists, other professionals, communities and organizations to produce work that creates positive environmental and social change. The MAP website is an open-source, interactive virtual resource center for projects that are creating positive change throughout the world.
Ms. Engelstad has taught and lectured at universities throughout the world. In 2006 she was a Fulbright Scholar at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava, Slovak Republic. She has a Masters Degree in photography from a joint program between New York University and the International Center of Photography and BAs in English and Political Science from the University of Washington, Seattle.

Liz Flyntz has produced a variety of exhibitions and curatorial projects, including an inter-city artist exchange program, and is co-editor of Erotic Economie s, a multimedia art journal.  Currently, she is researching artist-produced alternative economic models, and co-curating an exhibition of time-based work for the Bauhaus Universität Weimar.

Katerie Gladdys is an assistant professor in digital media art at the University of Florida at Gainesville who exhibits video installations and networked art in North America and Europe. Her work transforms mapped landscapes and familiar interactions into alternative geographies that transform how we experience a known place, space, and dynamic–encouraging others to look more closely at what constitutes their everyday existence.

Maximilian Goldfarb is an interdisciplinary artist, producing site-derived works in various media.  His recent project Deep Cycle (completed with support from the Harpo Foundation, the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and the Experimental Television Center) utilizes Mobile 49, an experimental mobile radio facility for articulating projects situated outside of conventional areas of production and reception.

Reiko Goto and Tim Collins are environmental artists, working together since 1985.  They embrace an ecosystems methodology, collaborating with a range of disciplines, communities and other living things. Goto orients herself through an experimental practice of empathic exchange imagination and metaphor. Collins seeks transformative experience and ideas that can leverage small creative freedoms for people, places and things. They are known for a phenomenological approach to site conditioned public art and a radical democratic approach to post-industrial landscape and ecological restoration. They are currently immersed in an experimental approach to the perception and understanding of trees, greenhouse gases and climate change. They have lived and worked in North
America, Europe and Asia.

Dara Greenwald is a media artist and researcher. Dara has participated in collaborative cultural production for many years including the Pink Bloque, Ladyfest Midwest Chicago, Version Fest, Pilot TV, United Victorian Workers, Spectres of Liberty and other groupings that resist being named. She recently co-curated (with Josh MacPhee) a large-scale research project about the history of social movements entitled Signs of Change: Social Movement Cultures 1960s to Now (AK Press/Exit Art 2010) which is now a book.

Sam Guarnaccia has worked, and is working closely in creative peace-related projects with the National Peace Academy, and The Rasur Foundation, inaugurated in Costa Rica, now expanding Peace education in public schools in the US, composing children’s songs for the school curriculum, and the BePeace Anthem to be recorded  for national distribution in September, 2011. His work with university students as a Spanish language teacher, scholar, and educator, entailed deep engagement with the social, cultural, and economic struggles in Latin America. Central in this struggle, is the powerful role and potential of the arts in informing, raising consciousness, and increasing the inner and outer capacities of individuals, groups, and institutions in understanding the need for and creating ‘right relationships’ in all spheres of life on and with the Earth.
He is currently writing the music for a major new work, the EaarthPeace Oratorio in permitted artistic collaboration with Wendell Berry, Bill McKibben, Thomas Berry, John Philip Newell, Joanna Macy, Rainer Maria Rilke and other voices of the new ‘spiritual ecology’ of planetary consciousness for Peace, for the ‘survival of creation’ and healing of the Earth community.

Pam Hall is a visual artist, film-maker, designer and writer, whose work has been exhibited across Canada and internationally and is represented in many corporate, private and public collections, including the National Gallery of Canada. Her creative practice is interdisciplinary and includes site-specific installation in and out of formal gallery settings, image and text, performance, video, and community-engaged work exploring the fisheries, the body, female labour, place, and the notion of home. She was the inaugural Artist-in-Residence in the Faculty of Medicine at Memorial University from 1997-1999, is an award-winning film designer and children’s book illustrator. She has been teaching graduate students from across North America since 1998 as a senior faculty member in the MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts Program at Goddard College in Vermont. She lives and works in St. John’s where she is currently pursuing her Interdisciplinary PhD at Memorial University in art as a knowledge practice which can penetrate boundaries, enable dialogue, and re-empower multiple and marginalised ways of knowing.   For further information on Hall’s work, visit

jj higgins is an emerging new media artist, whose work is formed through intersections of architecture and social space. She constructs installations and projected forms that act as recontextualized environments for both audience examination and intervention.  jj’s interests collide at the intersection of social behavior, etiquette, surveillance and the psychological spaces that embody memory and experience. Within an interdisciplinary practice that includes language, sound and video, performative and interactive elements and theoretical experimentation, the composite is challenging yet accessible to an audience that becomes its operating mechanism.

Pete Hocking is an interdisciplinary artist, teacher, and activist who lives and works in Providence, RI.  He is a faculty member at Goddard College in the MFA-IA program.

Johanna Householder has been making performances, video and other artwork in Canada since the late 1970s. Working at the intersection of popular and unpopular culture, she shapes plundered source material in order to talk back to mass forms. Her most recent performance works include a series of lectures On the Subject of Art, based on a text by Alain Badiou, performed in 2010 at Chaos in Belfast, N. Ireland, LiveAction Göteborg, Sweden, at Scandinavia House in NYC and in Guangzhou, China. Her video collaborations with B.H. Yael, Approximations 1- 3, have screened in numerous venues internationally. She is keenly interested in issues of embodiment, the histories of live art, and the effect that performance has had in contemporary art, new media, and social perception – and she writes and lectures on these subjects. With Tanya Mars, she edited Caught in the Act: an anthology of performance by Canadian women, published by YYZ Books, Toronto in 2005. As an organizer and communitarian she helped to found Danceworks and the Women’s Cultural Building in the 80s, and the 7a*11d International Festival of Performance Art in 1997, which held its 8th biennial festival in 2010. Her work is  represented in Prêt á Emporter / Take Out: Performance Recipes for Public Space, edited by Christine Redfern for La Centrale, Montréal, 2004 and in Jane Wark’s Radical Gestures: Feminism And Performance Art In North America, 2006. She is a Professor in the Integrated Media Program, Faculty of Art at OCAD University, where she is currently Chair of the Criticism and Curatorial Practice Program.

Adrian Ivakhiv is Associate Professor of Environmental Thought and Culture, University of Vermont. With degrees in Fine Arts Studies (B.F.A.) and Environmental Studies (M.E.S. and Ph.D.) and previous appointments in departments of Religious Studies & Anthropology (at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh) and Science and Technology Studies (at Atkinson College, York University), Adrian’s interdisciplinary background includes work in the humanities, creative arts, and social sciences. He is the author of Claiming Sacred Ground: Pilgrims and Politics at Glastonbury and Sedona (Indiana University Press, 2001) and the forthcoming Ecologies of the Moving Image: Cinema, Affect, and Nature, Executive Editor of the Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature, a former President of the Environmental Studies Association of Canada, and on the board of directors of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture.

Sarah Kanouse is an interdisciplinary artist examining the politics of landscape, public space, and cultural memory through arts practice and writing. In addition to her individual practice, she collaborates closely with groups like the Compass of the Midwest Radical Culture Corridor, which conducts action-research into the radical pasts, presents, and futures of the Midwest, and the Iowa City Artists Call for Workers’ Rights, a rapid-response group fighting the current right-wing assault on the working class. She teaches in the Intermedia program in the School of Art and Art History at the University of Iowa.

Rebecca Keller is an artist and writer, teaching at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Honors include two Fulbrights, grants from the National Endowment for the Arts; Illinois Arts Council; College Art Association; American Association of Museums as well as numerous exhibitions. Among her recent projects is “Excavating History” an ongoing series of collaborations, exhibitions, writing and public programming that intervenes in and unpacks the meaning and established narratives of public historic sites. “Excavating History” projects have taken place in the Jane Addams Hull House Museum, The Chicago Cultural Center; the International Museum of Surgical Science, the Glessner House Museum; an 1801 Anatomical Theater in Tartu Estonia; and the forest in Germany where Goethe wrote. A book on Excavating History is scheduled for release by Stepsister Press this fall.
Keller is also founding co-editor of YoYo Magazine: an iterative, collaborative on-line journal designed to create a platform where creative people can encounter and respond to one another. Yo-Yo aims to be connective tissue between community-based, studio-based and site-dependent art practices; between fiction, poetry, essays and nonfiction; between art and literature, and hybrid forms of cultural production.

Eben Kirksey
is a cultural anthropologist at the City University of New York Graduate Center who studies the political dimensions of imagination as well as the interplay of natural and cultural history.  Under the sign of the Multispecies Salon, he has brought bioartists and ecoartists into contact with the discipline of anthropology.  Art has served as a companion and catalyst practice for reimagining the horizons of biological anthropology.  As a guest co-editor of the journal Cultural Anthropology he assembled a collection of original research articles from the emerging field of “multispecies ethnography.”  Currently he is editing a book about the Multispecies Salon.

Laiwan:  Born in Zimbabwe of Chinese parents, Laiwan immigrated to Canada in 1977 to leave the war in Rhodesia.  She is an artist, writer and educator who uses poetics, improvisation and philosophy to work across disciplines. She is interested in things ephemeral, sublime, delicious, relational, and spacious.  Laiwan started the OR Gallery in Vancouver in 1983 and initiated the First Vancouver Lesbian Film Festival in 1988. Recipient of the 2008 Vancouver Queer Media Artist Award, Laiwan exhibits and is published locally and nationally, has curated projects in Canada, the US and Zimbabwe, and participates in queer, feminist and cultural organizing.   Laiwan recently showed in the Vancouver Art Gallery exhibition “Everything Everyday” and she continues to teach in the MFA Interdisciplinary Arts Program at Goddard College, WA, while based in Vancouver. (

Judith Leemann is an artist, writer, and educator invested in creating objects, texts, and environments that interrupt habitual thinking. She holds an M.F.A. in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a B.A. from the University of Virginia. She is Assistant Professor in Studio Foundations at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston and serves as Artist-in-Residence at the Design Studio for Social Intervention.  With Shannon Stratton she co-curated the exhibition Gestures of Resistance at the Museum of Contemporary Craft in Portland, Oregon (Jan. – June 2010.)

Lara Lepionka and Steve Brosnihan have operated the Beacon Street Farm since 2008 and have worked on the Pothole Reclamation Project since 2009.
Steve’s art career highlights include: White-Ellery Illuminated at the Cape Ann Museum, a site-specific installation in an historic structure; a 2005 Harbor Space as Art Space Grant from seARTS in Gloucester, MA for Dark Horse, a public art installation; and a 2003 commission by the Musculoskeletal Center in Peabody, MA for RGB, a site-specific installation. He has taught at Middlesex Community College in MA and Saint Xavier University and Governor’s State University in IL, and is currently a remote-employee Systems Administrator for The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Lara’s community-based art career highlights include: leadership of the Cape Ann Farmers’ Market Backyard Growers Program; a grant-funded Stone Soup Story Telling Performance & Curriculum for the Gloucester Public Schools; a 2008 group exhibition, Art in the Public Sphere—Singular Works, Plural Possibilities, University Gallery, University of Massachusetts, Amherst; a 2007 publication, The Object of Labor: Critical Perspectives on Art, Cloth, and Cultural Production, published by MIT Press; a 2007 artist residency at Cultural Exchange Station (CESTA) in Tabor, Czech Republic; a 2007 commission from the Gloucester New Arts Festival for Attention Shoppers, a collaborative project with local supermarket workers; a 2006 public art commission for Hidden Value from the Northampton Arts Council; a 2001 Illinois Art Council Fellowship Award; and a 2000 artist residency at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. Her work has been featured on National Public Radio and Community Arts Network APInews.

A harvester and maker of stories, Ju-Pong Lin works in video, performance, installation, and community storytelling. “By whatever means necessary” and “listening to heartbreak” are the mottos that guide her current inquiries and her lifelong pursuit of social and environmental justice. She cultivates relationships, dialogue, local culture and community. She has exhibited her work nationally, including Women in the Director’s Chair, the Walker Museum of Art, New York’s Mix festival, and the Tacoma Art Museum. She is a member of Direct Action for Rights and Equality and serves on the board of The Hive Feminist Art Collective. Ju-Pong received her MFA at The University of Iowa in Intermedia concentrating in video, performance and drawing. She taught at The Evergreen State College and now teaches in the MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts at Goddard College. She is a recipient of a Jerome Foundation grant and a Rhode Island State Council on the Arts Fellowship Merit Award. Ju-Pong also parents two children, who are her greatest teachers of the rigorous practice of love and compassion.

Katt Lissard is artistic director of The Winter/Summer Institute (WSI), a biennial multi-country HIV/AIDS theatre project that takes place in Lesotho, southern Africa. Katt spent most of 2005 at Lesotho’s National University as a Fulbright research/lecturer – WSI grew out her work there.  She will be returning to Lesotho on another Fulbright in January 2012 to begin work on a new environmentally-focused, community-based installation/performance project, Split the Village. The project involves the people, place and culture along the Phuthiatsana River, slated to be flooded in 2013 when construction of the Metolong Dam is complete. The goal of Split the Village is to create a variety of artistic and cultural “archives” of the River Valley, and to discover a performative context for the oral histories, the rituals of land and water, and the expression of place that are about to be lost.  Katt is on Goddard’s IMA faculty, and is a visiting writer in Long Island University’s MFA program. A 2009-2010 Resident Artist at Mabou Mines and a part of Make Art With Purpose (MAP) – Katt represents a team of colleagues, including Rethabile Malibo and Kelebohile Nkherenye.

Mary Mattingly is an artist working in New York. Her undertaking,Waterpod Project (2009); a self-sufficient, water-based vessel and public space, roamed New York’s waterways and docked in each borough, hosting 200,000 visitors.  Exhibitions include: International Center for Photography; Exit Art; Occurrence Espace d’art; Palais de Tokyo; and the Centre Culturel Calouste Gulbenkian.

Jeremy Mikolajczak examines the level of connectivity, advancement, and interaction between the real and simulated, while investigating the role of multiple identities in American life. Mikolajczak attempts to establish and reinforce simplistic visual signs of culture and media that create a perceived reality. His interest in the current “Americanized” world is one of both blind love and critical analysis.  Mikolajczaks individual work has been included in national and international exhibitions, while working collaboratively as a member of the artist group, Agent Orangerie. He is also an independent curator emphasizing on contemporary art theory and practice and is a frequent contributor to Review Magazine. He resides in Kansas City, Missouri and Chicago, Illinois.

Najma Nazy’at, ds4si Fellow, is the Director/Lead Organizer of the Boston Youth Organizing Project (BYOP). Najma has worked in youth programs and in the youth development field for over fifteen years. She previously served as a Youth Program Coordinator of the Central Branch YMCA’s Teen Center. After the YMCA, Najma served on a team at The Medical Foundation as a lead trainer to usher in the Boston BEST Initiative, a professional development and field building effort that supports Youth Development systematically and institutionally. Najma has consulted and trained nationally with organizations such as the Boston Community Building Curriculum, Interaction Institute for Social Change, and Listen, Inc.

Beth Nixon is the human behind many Ramshackle Enterprises. She creates puppets, masks, piñatas, parades, pageants, clown acts, suitcase theaters, magical lands and other spectaculah, on her own, and in collaboration with other humans of all ages.  She comes from Rhode Island, lives in West Philadelphia, and travels frequently to places where exciting building, performing, investigating or facilitating opportunities arise.  Mostly she uses cardboard, science, and the imagination.  She specializes in beasts. Beth believes in the power of bike helmets, cornstarch, tide pools, emancipatory pedagogy, utopian performatives, and snacks. She was awarded a 2010 Leeway Transformation Award for her art and social change work. For more info on Beth’s endeavors please see

Owen Driggs: Since 2007 Janet Owen and Matthew Driggs have worked as the collective identity “Owen Driggs”. Together they operate Performing Public Space, a multi faceted initiative that explores and supports ways in which citizen artists activate public space. The Owen Driggs-curated touring exhibition Performing Public Space debuted at Tijuana’s Casa del Tunel and will move to Rochester Contemporary Art, NY, in 2011. Most recently Owen Driggs has exhibited and performed at Orange County Contemporary Art, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art as part of Let Them Eat LACMA (2010).  (See their individual bios separately on this page.)

Janet Owen has exhibited internationally, including in the United States, Europe, Scandinavia and Brazil. She has curated exhibitions and screening programs in the United Kingdom, United States, People’s Republic of China and Mexico. A member of the Los Angeles-Based Metabolic Studio team, Janet is the editor of Not A Cornfield: History/Site/Document and has most recently participated in Strawberry Flag (Lauren Bon/Metabolic Studio, 2009-10), an artwork in the form of a veterans’ program. Her writings have been published most recently in How Many Billboards? Art In Stead; Hammer Projects 1999-2009; Heike Baranowski – Kolibri; and Art Review. Janet teaches in the Public Practice program at the University of Southern California.

Daniel Peltz is an artist and educator based in Providence, RI. Through his public projects and media installations, Peltz explores social systems, attempting to provoke ruptures in the socio/cultural fabric through which new ways of being may emerge and be considered.  To accomplish these goals, he uses a range of  intervention, ethnographic and performance strategies.  His projects often take the form of existing social systems (instant messaging protocols, karaoke bars, political campaigns, parking regulations, etc.) to directly engage non-art audiences in the questions posed by the language of art.  His recent works have been supported by a practice-based research grant from the Fulbright Association and residencies at Yaddo, the Helsinki International Artist Program and the International Artists Studio Program in Sweden.  Peltz is currently developing new works and lecturing on his recent public projects in a series of residency settings (ArtSpace Sydney, Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing and Cemeti Art House, Indonesia) during a sabbatical from teaching.  He is an associate professor of film/animation/video at the Rhode Island School of Design.

Deanna Pindell
addresses deforestation and water quality through remediation projects, public art, and sculptural installations. The ethics and aesthetics of interspecies relationships are interwoven with poetic metaphor and scientific perspective throughout her restorative works. Deeply rooted in the land-and-sea heritage of the Pacific Northwest, she cultivates critters and conifers in a remotely rural valley.

Sarah Ross is an artist who works in sculpture, video and photo. Her projects use narrative and the body to address spatial concerns as they relate to access, class, anxiety and activism. Sarah works collaboratively with the Compass group (of the MRCC) and Regional Relationships; both projects explore the social and economic landscapes of the Midwest. She has co-curated exhibitions at SPACES Gallery, Cleveland, Sea and Space Explorations, Los Angeles, and PS122, New York. Sarah teaches at The School of the Art Institute Chicago and a Illinois state prison, and works with local initiatives to provide education and literature to people in Illinois prisons.

Cynthia Beth Rubin is a new media artist whose investigations of cultural memory and meaning developed in lockstep with the innovations in new technology. Her works evoke cultural memories and meaning through the intertwining of photographic elements in complex layers of representation and abstraction.  Working in both still and moving imagery, as well as inter-activity, Rubin’s independent and collaborative works have been shown in museums and festivals around the globe.   Awards include Vidéochroniques in Marseilles, the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture, multiple Connecticut Commission on the Arts fellowships, and multiple international residencies. She holds degrees from Antioch College and the Maryland Institute, College of Art.

Megan Sandberg-Zakian is a theater-maker based in Providence, RI, and a proud graduate of Goddard’s MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts program. She has served as Associate Artistic Director of the Providence Black Repertory Company (RI) and The 52nd Street Project (NYC), and is the current recipient of a TCG Future Leaders grant to collaborate with the Underground Railway Theater in Cambridge, MA, over two seasons. Her work can currently be seen in Company One’s regional premiere of Tarrel Alvin McCraney’s Brother Sister Plays, at the Boston Center for the Arts through December 3.

Paul Lloyd Sargent focuses primarily on supply and disposal chains through an amalgam of media tactics, including: video, photography, experimental geography, radical cartography, grass roots activism, and sustainable culture as art practice.  He has presented work at: Exit Art, Conflux, Smack Mellon, Para/Site Art Space, and Gallery 400, amongst others.

Sam Sebren is a multidisciplinary artist presently working with free103point9/WGXC, a full power community radio station. Sam’s sound art has aired live on WGXC, neighborhood public radio for the 2008 Whitney Biennial, and WRPI.  He has exhibited widely, including the traveling exhibit (and accompanying book) “Paper Politics”.

Stacy Dawson Stearns
creates physical performance. Based in NYC from 1989-2003,  Stacy created solo and group pieces and was a member of several collectives/companies:  Blacklips Performance Cult, Advanced Beginner Group, and Big Dance Theater.  She was awarded a Bessie (NY Dance and Performance Award) for performance in 2000. Stacy’s performing art practice involves creating scores from material discovered within exploratory forms. She has been teaching within higher education art programs since 1996. Current investigations study the use of imagery, consciousness, and somatic intelligence as an antidote to the disappearance of shared symbologies.
Currently teaching at California Institute of the Arts, Stacy resides in Los Angeles with her family. LA audiences have seen Stacy’s work at RedCAT, The Getty Villa, Highways Performance Space, and the Alexandria Hotel.

Melding art, ecology and grassroots activism, California artist Susan Leibovitz Steinman engages multi-group collaborations to create street-front installations that revitalize blighted natural and cultural landscapes. Exhibited internationally, her sculptures, paintings and installations marry found and organic materials to comment on personal/political issues. Select awards: National Park Service Art & Community Landscapes residency; San Francisco Potrero Nuevo Fund Prize. She is editor/co-founder of WEAD, Women Environmental Artists Directory.

Lisa Strier writes:  We need to eat, we need to work, we dream, we fall in love. What all of us have is a different way of entering the world. We are engaged in the world and our cultures; awareness of that fact varies. The world is the space I inhabit: I am making conversation with people I don’t know, making art accessible. It’s a provocation to look closely, challenge the peripheral boundaries of meta-cultural material.
I am not content.
I am not content.
I am making art from a fluid and shifting realm which offers many metaphors and none of them can be completely trusted. It’s a call to examine assumptions, and in the tension between the intimate and the general, an invitation to overlay your own experiences on my words and images.
My work has been presented in regional group exhibits and solo shows. I have a BFA (1983) from The Cooper Union, NYC + an MFA-Interdisciplinary Arts (2011) from Goddard College. I live in Shohola, PA and you can friend me on Facebook, view my work @

Ruth Wallen is a multi-media artist whose work is dedicated to promulgating an ecological ethos.  Her installations, performative lectures and artists books have been exhibited widely.  She is particularly interested public projects, creating interactive “nature walks” and web sites, including The Sea As Sculptress, recently commissioned by the Exploratorium.  She is on the faculty of the MFA program in Interdisciplinary Arts at Goddard College and was a Fulbright lecturer at the Autonomous University of Baja California, Tijuana.

Alex Young uses critical historiography to the explore motivating factors, end results, and the subsequent potential for disconnection between the two in the construction of the built environment.  His project ‘Worldshaving’ was recently featured at construction sites throughout Buffalo, NY for the 2010 Beyond/ In WNY Biennial.

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