3/8/17 – Thinking. Visually. Together

Thinking. Visually. Together.
Artist and curator Deborah Davidson, biologist Albert Liau, and scientist, artist and activist David Morimoto
March 8, 2017, 12:30 - 1:30pm
Lesley University, University Hall Lower Level
1815 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02040

Visual Literacy Institute Fellows, Deborah Davidson and Albert Liau will engage with Professor David Morimoto, to explore ideas of visual literacy through the “lens” of patterns in nature. Visual literacy is the ability to interpret, negotiate, and make meaning from information presented in the form of an image. As infants, we learn to read images months before we become verbal and years before we attempt to become fluent in written language. From a young age, a great deal of educational emphasis is placed on identifying words and understanding their meanings. We also need to learn to identify, read, and understand images – to become literate in visual language – in order to participate effectively in our increasingly image-saturated culture.

David Morimoto
 received his PhD in Biology with a focus on animal behavior, ecology, and conservation biology from Boston University. He currently directs Lesley University’s Natural Science and Mathematics Division and teaches courses in research, natural history, complexity, and biology. He has studied birds in Massachusetts and South America and is currently doing urban ecology studies of birds in Cambridge. He has traveled extensively in exploration of the natural history of the world. He was elected as an inaugural National Leadership fellow of the SENCER (Science Education for New Civic Engagements and Responsibilities) program in 2008 and co-developed a national award winning semester long study abroad program to Guyana, South America. His interests include natural history, teaching, complexity theory, writing, indigenous knowledge as it intersects with modern science, drawing, sculpting, and poetry. He is currently working on a book entitled Random Walk in a Small World, which will focus on the unifying features of nature and how new perspectives incorporating this understanding are needed to help us solve the critical problems of our time.

Albert Liau


Drawing upon a background in social enterprise, Liau endeavors to infuse design thinking and Lean Startup methodologies into higher education pedagogical practices. He currently teaches Biology and Environmental Science classes in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Lesley University, where he is Associate Professor of the Natural Sciences and Mathematics at Lesley University.

Deborah Davidson is a curator, artist and educator. Deborah received her M.F.A. from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts/Tufts University and B.A. from Binghamton University. She is founder and director of Catalyst Conversations, devoted to the dialogue between art and science. She also teaches, maintains a studio practice and directs the Suffolk University Gallery. Her work is in many private and public collections, including Yale University, Wellesley College, Boston Public Library, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the Houghton Library, Harvard University. She has had solo exhibitions at the Danforth Museum of Art, Kingston Gallery, Oresman Gallery, Smith College and the Nesto Gallery, Milton Academy. Awards include Finalist, Brother Thomas Fellowship, Artist in Residence, Northeastern University, and a Berkshire Taconic A.R.T. grant.