I am an artist-writer-scholar who uses various creative methods as part of an ecological storytelling practice.
I have years of teaching experience, having taught at Brock University, York University, Concordia University, and the University of Rochester. For the most part, I rely on a transdisciplinary approach that combines environmental humanities, studio arts, visual culture, as well as science studies, animal studies, and queer theories.
I enjoy working collaboratively and engaging in community building scholarship and DIY activism. For example, in the above photo I am leading a session of Toronto's Technoscience Salon, discussing citizen science and the use of air bucket brigades in Aamjiwnaang and Louisiana's Cancer Alley as an engaged and effective form of environmental activism.
I recently completed my Ph.D. in the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University (2016).
My dissertation, Chemical Intimacies and Toxic Publics, draws from an assortment of archival and everyday material (government reports, tourist guides, newspaper clippings, postcards, and children drawings) to delineate some of the situated politics of ambient toxins: detailing the diffracted pathways of poisonous chemicals emitted from specific industries and imposed on specific people and ecologies. It focuses on two ethnographic sites and two polluting industries: half of the dissertation examines the politics of lead in Toronto (tracing its lingering effects in two working class neighbourhoods), while the other half focuses on a massive petrochemical corridor that is located in and around the small city of Sarnia (in southwestern Ontario) and immediately adjacent to the First Nation of Aamjiwnaang.
Chemical Intimacies and Toxic Publics, was written as a chimera – a swamp thing – that traces the messy politics of ambient toxins, showing some of the ways people are always already entangled in the manufacturing and distribution of pollution. The text is a mixture of methods, concerns, and voices, and is meant to be read as part manifesto, part ethnography, part autobiography, and part art object.
Chemical Intimacies and Toxic Publics was nominated for a York University Dissertation Prize.
Chapter 4 of my dissertation, The Tale of the Sarnia Nose, was published by the Art Gallery of York University as a 100-page artist book. It can be order here: