The archive, artistic research, and responsive documentation

Most of this is pulled from my thoughts regarding the Anarchivist position at matra lab.

This spring I came across Lawrence Halprin’s RSVP Cycles and reluctantly skimmed through it. While in graduate school for landscape architecture I had always dismissed Halprin’s work, (wrongfully) accusing it of being too obvious. But the RSVP Cycles were fresh and brand new to me and immediately woke me up. The Sea Ranch Ecoscore is what initially drew me in. To approach the site analysis process as if documenting a musical score was groundbreaking to me as a designer even in 2017. Lawrence's and Anna's vision and work, which tied together new modes of inquiry through experimentation, documentation, and community participation, changed how landscape architects work. They initiated the community design process - and gave landscape architecture and urban design a way to connect more deeply across disciplines.

Halprin’s RSVP Cycle Theory alongside the concept of responsive documentation has forced me to confront my current role as Research Development and Knowledge Manager at OLIN. Design research has had to carve out its own place within the broader research field. As design researchers, we ask how can we adopt (adapt) existing research methodologies and practices? And how do we document our research process? How do we ensure its accessibility? Where does this intersect with other disciplines? My role at OLIN is moving from providing information resources (as our in-house librarian, archivist, and knowledge manager) and support for our new research and innovation community (OLIN LABS) into generating a process for creating (and working with/in) a living archive and responsive documentation. I am working with our designers and project managers to create a protocol that defines what knowledge gathered during project work is useful to our designers, how to extract it, when to extract it, and then equally important how to document, store, and make accessible our processes and findings. OLIN LABS leaders are working together to determine how research projects are selected from this knowledge building process. We have already kicked off several informal projects, one primary research project, and are eager to build upon our successes and lessons learned. 

By reconstructing the role of archivists, we transform how researchers practice, which will inform new processes and new work. The archive can be a site of resistance, a place to build community, and may be the place to house the framework for increasingly more complex work to emerge and respond to changing practices.

Fingers crossed for Schuylkill Center's LandLab

Completed my application for the Schuylkill Center's LandLab residency program a few weeks ago and wanted to share a few ideas I developed for the application.

This program is such an incredibly strong fit for my work and a great opportunity for my practice to become more embedded into Philly - I am honored to even have a chance to apply. 

The Schuylkill Center offers many opportunities for revelatory landscapes - ways for my process to investigate water quality, phenology, biodiversity, and migratory patterns. Included here are two project proposals:

the subtle surface: restore and reveal

The first project, located at Springhouse Pond, would comprise live underwater sound and video modulated by live environmental quality data. It would also include revelatory sculptural elements that respond to water saturation or wind patterns. Possibly, this piece could include green infrastructure and slope restoration design above the Springhouse Pond. This project would capture water quality data prior to and after stabilizing the slope to analyze the success of the project.

in bloom

The second project analyzes climate change effects on bird migration and phenology. Plants are blooming earlier than ever before. This piece would utilize ecoacoustic monitoring to evaluate the migratory patterns of birds which would be compared against changes in phenology through remote sensing vegetation analysis. The sonic and visual analysis would be modulated and revealed within the landscape - through sound, video, sculpture, or performance. The installation may have to take place at a separate (but meaningful) location so as not to disrupt bird habitat. Also, there is an opportunity to stream the data, sound, and visuals online in conjunction with compiling for further analysis.


Just heard great news that Peak Discharge has been accepted to be installed at:


[Arts + Sciences x Technology = Environment / Responsibility]

A Sense of Place

August 21 to 23, 2017

i-DAT, Plymouth University, UK.

 Excited to explore a new ecoregion and place through artistic research.


2017 Residencies

Very excited to share that I have been accepted to the following residencies for the summer of 2017.

Submerge, Ayatana Artist Residency Program, Ottowa, Canada

OTHER/WISE, Design Inquiry, Vinalhaven, Maine