I am an interdisciplinary artist that works in sculpture, installation, and public art, as well as set design for theatre. I am also a passionate visual and performing arts educator, and have experience teaching K-12 and College level students. I currently teach full-time as the art teacher at Holy Family Catholic Academy and work as the North Theater Manager of the Francis X. Kinahan Theater and Bartlett Hall Dance Studio at the University of Chicago Department of Theater and Performance Studies. As an artist, I value the pursuit of knowledge, building relationships, respecting and learning from people’s differences, and supporting others’ creativity- and this extends to my teaching practice. As a child, and throughout adulthood I had the opportunity to live and study abroad. I was introduced to the Art and Culture of many different places very early on, and it’s from these experiences that I have recognized how important it is to find a common ground with those I teach and interact with. For me, this begins with a proper introduction which includes my name and preferred pronouns. I recognize not every student will relate to my background and identity, but I hope to create a comfortable environment where people feel their voices are being heard and everyone is represented. Art has the ability to create space for all voices, and can make people conscious of different perspectives, ideas, and even social injustices; thus one can argue art from all disciplines acts as the common ground of humanity. 

I strive to bring my own artist philosophy into the classroom setting, as I feel this creates an authentic experience for my students. I respect and value each of my students as individuals, and I respect the influence a child’s environment and mentor has on their ability to learn and retain knowledge. I am acutely aware that my role as an educator is to foster a healthy and respectful learning environment where self-reflection, critical discourse, and creative exploration can flourish. I encourage students to question everything, allow open discourse, and create a safe space for the exchange of ideas. My dedication to such an environment builds a space for compassion, empowerment and empathy, all of which help promote a forum where individuals can begin to develop their voice in their artistic practice. I believe that each student deserves the opportunity to learn, explore and create in a non-judgmental learning environment. I want my students to freely express themselves in my classroom and feel empowered to do so outside of it as well. By providing my students with the resources to navigate projects they feel passionate about and personal exploration I am able to guide them in their own independence. I am deeply committed to creating an inclusive, diverse, and welcoming atmosphere for students, and I hope to facilitate this by respecting my students and encouraging them to always try their best. These ideals are all crucial to my position as an art teacher. 

I began teaching ten years ago in 2012 as an Art Instructor for kids in juvenile justice detention centers and shelters for runaway youth, and much of the curriculum was designed and centered around art therapy principles. I learned early on just how powerful art could be if students felt comfortable just creating without feeling judgement, and through all of my experiences as an educator, I strive to create a nurturing space. Whichever class I am teaching in my goal is always to support my students and allow them to experiment, try and fail in order to be successful in achieving their artistic vision. My method of teaching is to work together as a class and research, read, analyze, contemplate, design/sketch, discuss, experience new methods and techniques, create, exhibit, share the work, and then repeat! I hope to help them develop their skills in leadership, design, and learning to trust one's artistic vision, as well as being open to incorporating the creative contributions of peers' feedback throughout classroom critiques. This past year I have gained experience working as a full-time art teacher for grades K-8th which has further developed my skills as an effective educator who can teach confidently and simultaneously in both virtual and in-person learning environments.  As a visual art teacher, I work to expand my student's knowledge on the elements of art and principles of design, as well as increase their understanding of classical and contemporary artists and art history. I pair each unit with a variety of mediums to help my students engage in lessons, and further explore drawing, painting, collage, printmaking & sculpture. I hope to expose them to new artists, techniques, processes and perspectives. I believe my role as an educator is to share knowledge and resources to best support each student’s journey in building a foundation in art. My goal is to encourage my students to speak freely, take risks, and explore all ideas within and outside of the classroom, so that they may leave as creative individuals, critical thinkers, and active community members. I look forward to working with and educating my students on something that I am very passionate about in hopes to pass this passion for creative exploration and expression along.