Biography

Rachel at the Medicine WheelWith a civil liberties lawyer for a mother and a rocket-scientist for a father, I learned early to consider wildly disparate interests overlapping in the same place. When I started school, I began studying architecture because it felt like a perfect combination of my enjoyment of the structured and formal, and my passion for design and making. I began my studies at Tulane University in New Orleans then finished with a dual Bachelors in Architecture and Fine Arts from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). Seeking a way to continue designing, but also to be more hands-on with building and painting I went on to earn a Master of Fine Arts in Theatrical Set Design and Scenic Art from Brandeis University.

After nearly a decade traveling the East Coast painting scenery in the regional theaters, I founded a mural company, painting in residences and museums, which felt in turn, like a perfect combination of designing architecture and painting backdrops. It seems that at every stage of my life I have been taking seemingly disparate elements and combining them to discover my next step forward.

It has been several years since I put contract work aside and turned my attention to my studio work and teaching. I am still enjoying the ever growing possibilities, discovering what happens when I put this idea and that one together to see what they make.

Community is central to my practice of art, and I volunteer for Somerville Open Studios and with other community arts events. I teach drawing classes out of my studio and on the college level, finding myself excited by the fresh perspectives of each year’s new students. My teaching informs my artwork and my experimentation in my studio becomes groundwork for my classroom.

A visual artist and a teacher who lives very much in the physical, I can be found year-round riding my bicycle across Somerville and Boston, with my art supplies on my back, occasionally stopping to stare at something beautiful.

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