In 1890, the psychologist and philosopher, William James, described “Cerebralists” as “those who combine the sensual and spiritual, the physical and intellectual” in their creations. Clearly, we’ve lost sight of the broader meaning and reality of this practice.
I’m a Cerebralist! I meld abstract and representational forms with sensual and conceptual elements, using all mediums and means of communicating. For the past three decades, I’ve explored the nature of the human mind and creative process: how we think, create, learn, invent, innovate, and communicate. My art shows how the mind is connected to all of its creations: from the words we use to describe our thoughts & feelings to the technologies we build to see everything in the world words can’t describe.
Cerebralism encompasses all forms and expressions of art. Through art, we can connect and transform everything (information, knowledge, ideas, experiences), to create new meanings and purposes for everything. Art makes life meaningful. It inspires wonder, while challenging the limits of our vision and imagination.
ONE-PERSON EXHIBITIONS (Selected)
2011 “Split<_>Second,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY May 14 – June 8
2010 “The Mind And All It Creates,” Fort Collins Museum of Contemporary Art, Fort Collins, CO January 15 – March 25
2008-07 “All Representations of Thoughts for Art and Science: Works by Todd Siler,” Tweed Museum of Art, University of Minnesota-Duluth, Dec. 4 – March 30
2007 “Todd Siler Adventures in ArtScience: Exploring the Mysteries of Creativity and the Hidden Dimensions of Human Potential,” National Science Foundation, Arlington, Virginia, July 11 – November 9th
2006 “Fractal Reactor: Re-Creating the Sun” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, NYC, Sept. 9 – Oct. 7.
2004 “A.R.T.Strings,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY. December 2-24. “A.R.T.Strings,” Boulder Museum of Contemporary Arts, Boulder, Colorado, Sept. 10 – Jan. 3, 2005 “Metaphormers,” 10 sculptural reveries on the nature of human creative potential, Exploration Place, Wichita, Kansas.
2000 “Metaphorming Life: Adventures in Thinking, Imagination and Innovation,” Museum of Outdoor Arts, featured exhibit at the grand opening of the Englewood City Center, Englewood, CO, June - December
1997 “Changing Minds,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY, featuring an original musical composition and performance by jazz pioneer Ornette Coleman and his group Harmolodics, November 22 - December 20 (videotape)
1996 “The ArtScience of Metaphorming,” an ongoing virtual installation, project and workshop at The Museum of Outdoor Arts, Greenwood Village, Colorado
1995 “Mind Icons & Metaphorms,” The Allen Center, Houston, Texas, January 4 - April 14
“Metaphorming Worlds,” Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taipei, Taiwan, January 28 - March 19
1994 “Artscience,” Crossman Gallery, Center of the Arts, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, November 3 - 28
1993 “Radical Futures,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY, February 27 - March 27 (catalogue and videotape)
“Metaphorming Minds,” The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, May 2 - June 2 (catalogue)
1992 “Todd Siler: Metaphorms,” Turman Gallery, Indiana State University, November 1 - 21 (catalogue)
“Foresight,” Horace Richter Gallery, Old Jaffa, Israel, July 5 - August 2
1991 “Humanature - A Turbulent Integration,” Museum of Modern Art, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, April 16 - May 30
“The Gravity of AmBIGuity,” Joseloff Gallery, University of Hartford, West Hartford, Connecticut, March 8 - April 14
1990 “Savage Boundaries,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY, November 17 - December 22 (videotape)
“Metaphorming Minds: Journeys Into Thought Processes,” Boston Center for the Arts, Cyclorama Building, Boston, Massachusetts, November 29 - January 30 (videotape)
1988 “Metaphorms: Forms of Metaphor,” The New York Academy of Sciences, New York, NY September 28 - November 28; The Chicago Academy of Sciences, Chicago, December 16, 1988 - March 19, 1989 (catalogue) “Space of Mental Imagery: Mixed media paintings and collages,” Commons Gallery, University of Hawaii at Manoa and Visual Notations From a Book of Mental Imagery: Drawings and lithographs, Koa Gallery, Kapiolani College at Diamond Head, Hawaii November 13 - December 3
1987 “The Art of Thought,” Centre Saidye Bronfman, Montreal, Quebec, July 21 - August 20 (catalogue)
“Psi -Phi: The Hidden Territory,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY, February 14 - March 14
1985 “Forms of Mind,” Grey Art Gallery, New York University, New York, March 4 - April 19
1984 “Mental Representations,” Hokin Gallery, Miami, Florida, April 4 - May 3
1983 “Thoughts / Thought-Assemblies,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY, September 10 - October 8 (catalogue)
“Insights and Explorations,” M.I.T. Museum's Margaret H. Compton Gallery, Cambridge, Massachusetts,
October 6 - December 16 (catalogue)
1982 “Cerebreactors,” Galerie France Morin, Montreal, Quebec, September 25 - October 10
1981 “Top Secret: Inquiries Into The Biomirror,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, NY (Both downtown and uptown galleries), March 14 - April 16 (catalogue)
1978 “Sculptural Illusions,” O.K. Harris Gallery, New York, NY, April 1 - 22
GROUP EXHIBITIONS (Selected)
2010 “Kirkland Museum Collection: 100 Years of Colorado Art – Painting and Sculpture,” Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, January 21 to April 4
2009 “Black&WhiteWorks,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, June 6 – July 13
2006 William Havu Gallery, Denver, CO, February 17 – March 18
2005 Galerie Seippelwachs, Berlin, Germany, March 25 – June 4
2003 “American Dream,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York
2002 “Elemental Energy: Earth, Air, Fire, Water,” Public Art at Lowry. Museum of Outdoor Arts and the Lowry Foundation;
Todd Siler, “Mind Fields,” painted steel, 12ft. x 30ft. x 25ft.
2001-2002 Museutopia Exhibition. “Thinking Utopia” (Utopisches Denken), Karl Ernst Osthaus-Museum Hagen, Germany,
in conjunction with the Institute for Cultural Studies at the Center for Advanced Scientific Studies (Kulturwissenschaftliches Institut im Wissenschaftszentrum Nordrhein-Westfalen) in Essen
2001 “Art/Science Science/Art: An Exhibition & Symposium Exploring the Connections,”
Promega, BioPharmaceutical Technology Center, Madison, WI, March 13 – June 12
2000 “Medicine in Art,” College of the Mainland Art Gallery, Texas City, TX, March 6 – April 6
1999 “Romancing the Brain,” Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, Pittsburgh, PA, September 18 – November 21 “Elemental Energy,” Museum of Outdoor Arts, Greenwood Village, CO, May 15 – Nov. 15“Arts and Culture in Davos,” World Economic Forum, Cologny/Geneva, Switzerland, January - February
1998 “Defining Structures,” sponsored by LaSalle Partners at NationsBank Plaza, Charlotte, North Carolina, January - October
“Baroque Bash,” Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, Florida, January
1995 “Withdrawing,” special exhibition of drawings commemorating the 25th anniversary of Ronald Feldman Fine Arts,
New York City
1994-96 “CAVS/MIT- 25 Years: Light Space Time (a Center for Advanced Visual Studies retrospective).” Three-year international traveling exhibition sponsored by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1994-95 Blast #4, "BIOINFORMATICA." Exploring the connections between physical space and information systems.
Sandra Gering Gallery, New York, December 3, 1994 - January 14, 1995 and Koelner Kunstverein, Cologne, Germany,
mid Jan. - March 1995.
1993-94 “Ars Technica: L'Art au Defi des Technosciences,” La Villette, Parc de la Villette, Paris"Espace Projets,"
November 13-15, 1993. Exhibition organized by Piotr Kowalski and Claude FaureBlast #3 "Remaking Civilization." 50 mixed media responses to three basic questions concerning our collective future and the development of a world civilization. Limited edition, handmade boxes with off-set reproductions of the 50 responses in each box. Published by The X-Art Foundation, New York, NY “The Unconscious at Work,” Peyton Wright Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico, June 1-30
1991-92 “Eighteen from New York,” European traveling exhibition commences at Galerie Lohrl in Monchengladbach, Germany, September 15 - October 20, 1991(accompanied with prints, JUNI Edition) Blast Art Benefit, The X-Art Foundation and Blast Journal, New York, NY, April 11-18, 1992. Proceeds directed in part towards the publication of Blast #3: "Remaking Civilization"
1990 “Savoir-vivre, Savoir-faire, Savoir-etre,” Centre International D'Art Contemporain De Montreal, Quebec,
September1 - October 28 (catalogue)
1988 “1987 Massachusetts Artists Fellowship Show,” CityPlace, Boston, May 5 - July 2 Art and the Brain, Art Institute of Chicago (The first international conference and exhibition on this subject, May 12 - 14 ) (brochure) “Interaction: Science And Art,” The Squibb Gallery, Princeton, New Jersey, October 2 - November 13 “Otto Piene und das CAVS/MIT,” Deutscher Kunstlerbund, Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe, West Germany, September 17 - October 23 (catalogue)
“Artists' Liaison,” The Evanston Art Center, Evanston, Illinois, September 10 - Oct. 9
1987 “Symbolic Narrative,” Beaver College, Glenside, Pennsylvania, April 8 - 28 (catalogue) “Lights / Orot: Lights of Creation,” Yeshiva University Museum, New York, January 31, 1987 - January 1, 1988 (catalogue) “Art Against Aids,” Sponsored by the American Foundation for AIDS Research (AmFAR), an Art Sale, Ronald Feldman Gallery (one of seventy-two participating New York galleries), June - December, with Sotheby's publication. (catalogue)
1986 “Light: Perception - Projection,” Centre International D'Art Contemporain de Montreal (CIAC), Quebec, August 1 - November 2 (catalogue) “PERFO 4-D Arts Festival,” Rotterdam, Netherlands “Imagining Antarctica,” Eine Ausstellung im Stadtmuseum Linz - Nordico in Zusammenarbeit mit LIVA und ORF-Landesstudio Oberosterreich, June 20 – Aug. 31 (catalogue)
1985 “18th Bienal Internacional De Sao Paulo,” Sao Paulo, Brazil, October 4 - December 15 (catalogue)
“Brainworks,” Municipal Art Gallery, Barnsdall Art Park, Los Angeles, CA, Aug. 6 – Sept. 1 (catalogue)
1984 “Philosophies On The Art Process,” Caidoz in Makkom, Amsterdam, June 1988 “The Year One: 1984-2001,” The Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, Virginia, February 7 - March 9 “Politics In Art,” Queensboro Community College/The City University of New York, March 25 - April 13 (catalogue) “Artventure at AREA,” New York, NY. WilliWear Productions, Ronald Feldman Gallery and the Public Art Fund sponsoring "Artist T-Shirts" (20 artists were invited to create an artwork for a mass produced T-Shirt; artists included: Arman, Christo, Keith Haring, Jenny Holzer, Barbara Kruger, Les Levine, Edward Schlossberg, SITE, among others.)
1983 “Connections: Science Into Art,” Summit Art Center, Summit, New Jersey, March 18 – May 13 (catalogue)
“The 1984 Show - A Preview,” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Gallery in conjunction with "The Village Voice", New York, NY, January 26 - March 12 (catalogue) “The New Culture,” Center for Peace Through Culture, Toronto
1982 “Alea(s),” A.R.C.2, Musee D'Art Moderne De La Ville De Paris, France, March 5 - April 26 (catalogue)
Revolutions Per Minute (The Art Record), produced by Ronald Feldman Fine Arts and the Greene Street Recording Studio,
New York, NY, April 24 -June 5; lithographs and audio recordings by each of the 21 artists represented by the Ronald Feldman Gallery were presented at the following galleries and museums: The Tate Gallery, London, August 23 - September 23
Documenta, Galerie Ursula Block, Berlin, Germany , June - September Biennale de Paris, France
The Basement Group, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England, October 1 – 31 “War Games,” February 27 - March 27, and The Atomic Salon: Artists Against Nuclear War, Ronald Feldman Fine Arts in conjunction with "The Village Voice", New York, NY,
June 9 - July 10 “Anti-Apocalypse: Artists Respond To The Nuclear Peril,” Ben Shahn Gallery, The William Paterson College of New Jersey, September 6 - October 6 “Ars Electronica,” im Rahmen des Internationalen Brucknerfestes, "Festival fur Kunst, Technologie und Gesellschaft, Linz, Austria, September 24 - October 1 (catalogue) “Drawing New Directions,” Summit Art Center, New Jersey, March 7- April 8
1981 “Collaborations One,” Connecticut College Museum, Connecticut, April 1-8 (catalogue) “Schemes: A Decade of Installation Drawings,” Elise Meyer Gallery, New York City, June 4 - 27; one year traveling national exhibition (catalogue):
Musee D'Art Contemporain, Cite du Havre, Montreal, Quebec
Lehigh University Art Galleries, Pennsylvania
Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
Emily Lowe Gallery, Hofstra University, New York
Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, Rhode Island
Anderson Gallery at the Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia
1980 Muhlenberg College Museum, Allentown, Pennsylvania
“Imaginary Voyages,” Bronx Museum, New York, June 26 - August 29
1980-79 “Reality of Illusion”; traveling national exhibition organized by the Denver Art Museum and the University of
Southern California Art Galleries (catalogue):
Denver Art Museum, Denver, Colorado, July 13 - Aug. 26, 1979
University of Southern California Art Galleries, Oct. 11 - Nov. 25, 1979
Honolulu Academy of Art, Hawaii, April 4 - May 18, 1980
Oakland Museum, Oakland, California, June 17 - July 27, 1980
University Art Museum, University of Texas, Austin, Sept. 4 - Oct. 19
Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Nov. 15 - Dec. 30, 1980
1975 The Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, Florida (1st Prize, Drawing Competition, Statewide), February 10 - March 8
1972 Colby College Museum, Waterville, Maine, (Painting Fellowship Award, Statewide Competition, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture), June 4 - 28
PUBLIC COLLECTIONS (Selected - alphabetical order)
Belser Verlag Print Archives, Stuttgart and Zurich
Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO
Karl Ernst Osthaus-Museum Der Stadt Hagen, Germany
Fort Collins Museum of Contemporary Art, Fort Collins, CO
Kirkland Museum, Denver, CO
Life Sciences Institute, University of Michigan
The Israel Museum, Jerusalem
The Metropolitan Museum of Art (20th-Century Collection), New York
The M.I.T. Art Collection, Cambridge, MA
Museum of Modern Art, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Museum of Modern Art, New York
Museum of Outdoor Arts, Englewood, Colorado
Rutgers University Print Archives, New Jersey
Sun Jae Museum, Seoul, Korea
The New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York
The Pushkin Fine Arts Museum, Moscow
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
The Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, Connecticut
The Wal-Mart Art Collection and City of Englewood, CO
The Whitehead Foundation: The Whitehead Institute for
Biomedical Research, Cambridge, Massachusetts
The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
Tweed Museum of Art, University of Minnesota, Duluth
PUBLIC ART COMMISSIONS (Selected)
2007 Ascension, mixed media on synthetic canvas. 52ft.(h) x 18ft.(w). Commissioned by John Madden Company, Greenwood Village, Colorado, for the Palazzo Verdi building.
2005 Arc of Light & Life, mixed media on synthetic canvas with seven wall-mounted sculptures (digital photo-metaphorms fused on aluminum plate). 30 ft. x 75 ft. x 2.5 ft. Commissioned permanent installation at 655 West Broadway, San Diego, California; Lankford & Associates, Inc.
2000 Dream Tree: Celebrating the Wonder of Humanity and the Beauty of Civility, painted steel sculpture commissioned by the City of Englewood and Wal-Mart Corporate Art Collection. The 7-ton sculpture, which is 22ft.h x 40ft.w x 8ft.d, contains quotations by noted historical figures and large-scale photographic images adhered to curved steel branching tree-like structures. Permanently installed December at the Wal-Mart store in Englewood, CO
2007 Todd Siler ArtScience Adventures: Exploring the Mysteries of Creativity and the Hidden Dimensions of Human Potential (forthcoming). ArtScience Adventures explores the power of integrative thinking that flows from the arts’ natural partnership with science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. This book presents 300 four-color reproductions representing three decades of Siler’s exploratory artworks.
Todd Lael Siler, “Fractal Reactor: An Alternative Method and Apparatus for Plasma Fusion,” in Proceedings of the Fourth Symposium on Current Trends In International Fusion Research, (pp. 411-426) edited by Dr. Emilio Panarella and Charles D. Orth. NRC Research Press, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa, ON KIA OR6 Canada);
Todd Lael Siler, “Fractal Reactor: An Alternative Nuclear Fusion System Based on Nature’s Geometry,” in 13th International Conference on Emerging Nuclear Energy Systems, [pp.239-246] edited by Prof. Dr.-Ing. Sumer Sahin, June 03-08, Istanbul, Turkey; ICENES 2007 Conference was hosted by Gazi University, Ankara and Bahcesehir University, Istanbul.
“Fractal Reactor: Re-Creating the Sun,” in Leonardo Journal of Art, Sciences & Technology Vol. 40, No. 3, pp. 270-278
(The MIT Press).
2005 “Metaphorming” Your Life: Using Your Creativity To Achieve Your Goals and Realize Your Potential, in Informal Learning Review (www.informallearning.com) and New Horizons in Learning http://www.newhorizons.org/lifelong/workplace/siler.htm
2004 A.R.T.Strings (All Representations of Thought): A Guide To the Works of Todd Siler, (Boulder, Colorado: Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art and The Museum of Outdoor Arts); 115 pp. / 68 illus.
2003 “Think Like a Genius® Program for Business: Engaging Everyone In An Organization To Think, Learn, Work, and Perform To the Best of Their Abilities Through Metaphorming® “ in Prem Kumar (ed.) Organisational Learning for All Seasons: Building Internal Capabilities for Competitive Advantage. Foreword by Yong Ying-1 (Singapore: National Community Leadership Institute), pp.285-296
2002 “Metaphorming Your Company: Leading with the Next Generation of Brainstorming Tools,” essay in Leader To Leader magazine of the Peter F. Drucker Foundation, Hesselbein & Company (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass / A Wiley Company)
Spring 2002, pp. 15-19.
2001 “Metaphorming Utopia” article for the Museutopia Exhibition, Karl Ernst Osthaus-Museum Hagen, Germany; The MIT
1997 Think Like A Genius, New York: Bantam Books, 304 pp. 198 illus, hardback edition; Transworld Books softback edition: January 1999; foreign editions: Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, German, Indonesian, Romanian, and Spanish
1995 Metaphorming Worlds, The Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taiwan, Republic of China. Introductions by Dr. Robert Root Bernstein, distinguished physiologist and science historian, and Marilynne S. Mason, art writer, 72 pages with 45 full-color reproductions
1993 Cerebralism: Creating A New Millennium of Minds, Bodies and Civilizations, New York: Ronald Feldman Fine Arts,
42 pp. 28 illus
1991 Metaphorming Minds: Envisioning the Possibilities of Nature, limited edition artist's book and portfolio of prints Old Jaffa, Israel: Old Jaffa Press. 37 multi-colored serigraphs (each 40x60cms) on Arches 300gm paper with 18 off-set reproductions of Siler's artwork with his text; handbound book is an edition of 100; the boxed portfolio contains the same number of prints in edition of 130
Breaking the Mind Barrier: The Artscience of Neurocosmology. New York: Simon and Schuster, 416 pp. with 100 b/w line drawings, End Notes, Index, Bibliography; softback: New York: Touchstone Books; 416 pp. with 100 b/w line drawings, End Notes, Index, Bibliography; foreign editions: Chinese, Spanish
1988 Metaphorms: Forms of Metaphor. New York, NY: The New York Academy of Sciences, 19 pp. with 13 illus
The Art of Thought. Centre Saidye Bronfman, Montreal and Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, 43pp. with 20 illus
1986 Architectonics of Thought: A Symbolic Model of Neuropsychological Processes. Ph.D. Dissertation, Interdisciplinary Studies in Psychology and Art, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 189 pp. with 70 illus.
1985 LEONARDO Journal, Vol.18, No.1, pp.1-10, "Neurocosmology: Ideas and Images Towards An Art-Science-Technology Synthesis"
1983 The Biomirror. New York: Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Inc, 57 pp. with 33 illus.
1981 Cerebreactors. New York: Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Inc, 19 pp. with 34 illus. Reality. Masters of Science in Visual Studies (Thesis). Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 146 pp. with 87 illus
2010 “Heady Stuff: When Science Meets Art,” by Lynette Chilcoat, Reporter-Herald, February 12. “Science and
Art- an Inseparable Marriage of Equals”, 2010 JANUARY 26
2009 “ArtScience® is a Big Idea: Art and Science synergize at the forefronts of creative endeavor,” by Michele and Robert-Root-Bernstein, Imagine That! Blog Annals of Ordinary and Extraordinary Genius, Psychology Today on Creativity, April 8, 2009
2007 Mary Lee Grisanti, "Fractal Reactor: Re-Creating the Sun,” NYArts Magazine (Jan. 1) Lilly Wei, "Fractal Reactor" in Art In America (February Issue, 2007, pp.141,142)
2005 Donald Goddard, “Conrad Atkinson: Collaborations & Todd Siler: A.R.T.Strings,” in New York Art World, Feb. 2, 2005; www.newyorkartworld.com/reviews/atkinson-siler.html
2004 Kyle MacMillan, Denver Post Fine Arts Critic, The Denver Post (Friday, Dec. 24, 2004, pp.3FF & 5FF). http://www.denverpost.com/Stories/0,1413,36~78~2613971,00.html#
2002 "Our Genius Problem" by Marjore Garber, The Atlantic Monthly. December 2002 Issue; pp. 64-72 (note page 67).
2001 “DAVOS, INC. Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey and Yasser Arafat walk into a bar…No, really – this sort of thing actually happens in Davos,” by James Atlas, Vanity Fair, May 2001, pp. 168-227; amusing critique of IdeasLab workshop, p. 224.
2000 “Art, Science Link Hands in Promega,” by Kevin Lynch, staff writer for The Capital Times, Madison Capital Times, Madison, Wis.; Mar 28“Creative Experiments Promega Exhibit Explores the Symbiotic Relationship of Art and Science,” by Lori Veit, staff writer for the State Journal, Wisconsin State Journal, Madison, Wis.; Apr 8
Mademoiselle, “Find Your Creative Self: Thoughts dried up? Ideas slowed down to a trickle? Take this quiz and learn how to open the floodgates...,” by Elise Pettus, self-discovery test and feature article, June 1998, p.93 – 95
1993 Crosswinds, Albuquerque, New Mexico, June 2, 1993, "The Dream Wilderness" by Sally Eauclaire; article on the Association for the Study of Dreams and exhibition at the Peyton Wright Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico
Pasatiempo, June 4-10, 1993, pp. 14-16. "The Unconscious at Work" by Candelora Versace; Review of exhibition at the Peyton Wright Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico The Villager, Vol. 62, No. 40, February 24, p.10. "Todd Siler looks into the future....,"
by Julie Rauer The Palm Beach Post, TGIF, Friday, March 19, Art Reviews by Gary Schwan
1991 Art in America, April, pp.170, 172; "Todd Siler at Feldman and the Boston Center for the Arts, New York/Boston," by Ann Wilson Lloyd Tema Celeste, April, pp. 92, 94; "Todd Siler, Ronald Feldman Fine Arts," by Jude Schwendenwien
The Boston Herald, Tuesday, December 25, "Siler's art explores the mind," by Daniel Grant
The New York Times Book Review, February 3, p. 35, "Noted With Pleasure," Breaking the Mind Barrier
International Synergy Institute II, No. 1, pp.5-7, "Book Review: Breaking the Mind Barrier," by Allyn B. Brodsky
Yedioth Aharonoth, May 22, pp. 17-18, "In the Footprints of Leonardo"
1990 The New York Times Book Review, December 30, pp. 4,7; "Cerebreactors and Processmorphs," by George Johnson (on Siler's book Breaking the Mind Barrier ). South End News, January 17, p. 11; "Thinking Man, Siler opens his mind at the Cyclorama" (Boston Center for the Arts), by Cate McQuaid
The Kirkus Reviews, October 15 ( Review of Breaking the Mind Barrier )
Library Journal, October 18 (Breaking the Mind Barrier )
Publishers Weekly, October 19, p.47 (Breaking the Mind Barrier)
The Gazette (Montreal, Quebec); Saturday, September 1, p. J4 ; "100 Days of Contemporary Art," by Ann Duncan
Etc., Revue De L'Art Actuel, December - Winter, pp.12-18, "Eco-logique, echo-politique: <<Savoir-vivre, savoir-faire, savior-etre>>," by Annie Molin Vasseur
1989 Chicago Academy of Sciences Newscast, January-February, p.1. "The Art of Science: Metaphorms Exhibit Explores the Human Brain"
1988 Princeton Packet Papers (9 New Jersey newspapers), October 26, "Interaction: Science and Art at Squibb," by Estelle Sinclair Ka Leo O Hawaii, Honolulu, November 7, p.10, "A Picture of the Mind," by Pearl Page
New Hope Gazette (Pennsylvania), September 22, "Squibb celebrates 50th anniversary with exhibition"
Columns (Squibb Corporation), October 1, "Science and Art Blend at the Squibb Gallery"
The Voice of Hunterdon (White House Station, New Jersey), October 19, p.1, "Science and Art Blend at the Squibb Gallery"
1987 Tema Celeste, May, pp.72, 191; "Todd Siler, Ronald Feldman Gallery, New York" by Phillip Evans-Clark
Artforum, May, p.147; "Todd Siler at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Gallery" by Patricia C. Philips
Art in America, September, p.175; "Todd Siler" by Stephen Westfall
Art Press, No.113, April; Expositions: "Todd Siler, Galerie Ronald Feldman" by Phillip Evans-Clark
Helsingin Saromat, April 26, Helsinki, Finland: "Art Reviews"
Le Devoir, Saturday, August 15, Montreal, Quebec: "From Todd Siler to Marina Abramovic From A Neurological Art To A Cosmological Symbolism" by Claire Gravel and Ulay Spirale, Octobre, 11, Arts Plastiques - Theatre Mental, Psi-Phi: The Art of Thought de Todd Siler," Centre Saidye Bronfman, July 21 to Aug. 20, by Pascale Beaudet
1986 Le Devoir, August 2, Montreal, Quebec; "Lumieres" Vie Des Arts, Vol.31, Numero125, p.28, Montreal; "Lumieres" by Pascale Beaudet
1985 MD Publications, February, pp.233-250 passim; "Where Art And Medicine Meet" by Marguerite Feitlowitz
1984 Port Folio Magazine, Vol.1, No.28 February 7-14, "Art and Orwell" by Linda McGreevy
Virginian-Pilot & Ledger-Star, February, "Chrysler Exhibit Large On Symbolism" by Teresa Annas
Express Magazine, Winter, p.17; "Todd Siler at Feldman" by Cyril Christo
The Sunday Star-Ledger, April, "Weekend Guide: Art" by Eileen Watkins
The New York Times, Jan. 26, "Helping Designers Build Prototypes," by Angela Taylor
1983 Cosmopolitan (International), September; "Kunst New York: Untergrund-Kunstler in feinen Galerien."
Arts Magazine, October, p. 34; "Todd Siler / Ronald Feldman Fine Arts" by Ellen Handy.
1982 Liberation, March 30, p. 21, "Exposition: Alea" editorial by Herve Gauville and review by Jean-Pierre Thibaudat of A.R.C.2, Musee D'Art Moderne's "Alea(s)" Exhibition.
Latitude, May 7, "Alea(s): Onze Artistes Jettent Un Pont Entre L'Art Et La Science" by Maiten Bouisset of "Alea(s)" Exhibition
Arts Magazine, April, "Esthetique, Machine Et Reve Scientifique" by Anne Tronche on "Alea(s)" Exhibition
Le Monde, February 4, "ALEA(S) a L'A.R.C." by Genevieve Breerette
Arts Magazine, April, p.77; "War Games: of Arms and Men" by Jonathan Crary
1981 DOMUS Magazine, No. 623, December, Forum, p. 9; "The Brain As An Art Medium" by Emanuelle Biondi (on "Cerebreactors").
Vanguard Magazine, December/ January, pp. 30, 31; "Todd Siler/ Galerie France Morin" by Martha Fleming
A Presse Journal, Montreal, Saturday 24, October, "Chronique Des Arts: Six Expositions Prospectives" by G.T. of "Cerebreactors" Exhibition at Galerie France Morin
FEATURE ARTICLES ON SILER (Selected)
2006 Joy Overbeck, “Local Artist Goes Nuclear As He Fuses Art and Science…And Who Knows, Maybe He’ll Win the Nobel Prize,” in Colorado Expression Oct./Nov., (pp. 72-74)
2004 Nora Caley, "Think Like A Genius!" Colorado Company Magazine (November/December Issue, Vol. 2, No. 4, pp. 46-48)
2000 The Baltimore Sun, “Thinking outside the box,” feature article about T.S. keynote at the Association of Youth Museum’s Interactivity 2000 Conference, May 12, page 1E
Mademoiselle, “Find Your Creative Self: Thoughts dried up? Ideas slowed down to a trickle? Take this quiz and learn how to open the floodgates,” by Elise Pettus, self-discovery test and feature article, June 1998, p. 93 – 95
Bottom Line Personal, “How to Unlock the Genius Inside You,” Privileged Information section, March 1, p.13
The Rocky Mountain News, “Work of Genius: Brilliant is as brilliant does, author says,” by Alan Dumas, feature article on Think Like A Genius in the Arts & Entertainment section, February 5
1997 Scripps Howard News Service, “Thinking Like A Genius,” by Jay Ambrose, chief editorial writer, feature article on Think Like A Genius, December 23 Colorado Expressions, “In ‘ArtScientist’ Todd Siler’s Palette, Gray Matters,” by Colleen Smith, feature article on artwork including images of the work in the Art Scene section, pp. 44-48
Denver Catholic Register, “Author encourages people to think in new ways,” by Peter Droege, feature article, December 10, p.14 The Denver Post, "Firm sells real talent - creativity," by Robert Schwab, Denver, Colorado, January, feature business article, February 1, Section D, p.1
The Villager, “Scientist/artist Siler has new ideas for creative learning,” feature business article, January 16, p.10
1996 The Rocky Mountain News, "This genius opens minds," by Gary Massaro, Denver, Colorado, December 6, 1996, profile article, p. 50A
1995 The Rocky Mountain News, "Learning to Think Like a Genius: Rethinking How We Think; Colorado artist/scientist Todd Siler has new ideas for creative learning," by Alan Dumas, Denver, Colorado, July 2, feature article in Sunday Spotlight section,
pp. 49A and 62A - 64A
1994 The San Juan Star, "Todd Siler: Metaphorming Worlds," by Michael Marrero, San Juan, Puerto Rico, August 28, Venue section, cover & pp. 4, 5
Colorado Expressions, "Metaphorms and Art," by Marilynne S. Mason, Denver, Colorado, Summer, pp. 112 - 115
1993 Times Union, "Siler tracks art in lair of mind," by Jo Page, Albany, New York, Sunday, August 15, p. H2
Berkshires Week, The Berkshires Eagle, "Tranquillity, terror and 'metaphorms'," by Jeffrey BorakJuly 16, pp. 8, 9
The Hartford Courant, "Siler's Mindscapes, Metaphorms Transform View of the World,"
by Kathryn Boughton, Supplement, Taconic Week, Thursday, July 29, 1993, Cover + p. 3
Palm Beach Daily News, "Siler exhibit links art and science," by Jan Sjostrom,
Palm Beach, Florida, Tuesday, March 16, p.1
1991 El Cronista, "Todd Siler en Buenos Aires. De la union del arte y la ciencia salio algo que todavia no se sabe bien ques es. Cual es el lenguaje del cerebro?", por Leonardo Tarifeno, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Domingo 14 de abril, pp.2, 5
Estado De Minas, "Desenhos do Universo Mental: a arte de Todd Siler," por Berta Sichel, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Domingo 14 de abril, p.5
Hoje Em Dia, "Universo Imaginado: Siler mostra a ciencia que ha na arte," Cultura, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 16 de abril, p.6
Estado de Minas, "Siler, um cientista da arte," por Silvia Helena Laporte, Diario da Tarde - Caderno 2-11, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 18 de abril
Estado De Minas, "Siler integra arte e ciencia," Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 19 de abril, p.10
Journal da Pampulha, "Todd Siler: quebrando a barreira da mente," por Gregory Adams, Pampulha, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, de 20 a 26 de abril, p.12
Jornal do Commercio, "Siler: quando ciencia e arte," Recife, Brazil, 23 de abril, p. 8
The Hartford Courant, "Todd Siler's art is mindful of science: In Siler's mind, art, science entwined," by Courant Staff Writer, Owen McNally, Wednesday, March 6, Cover page + p.2
The Jerusalem Report, "Renaissance Mensch, 'Artscientist' Todd Siler explores mind and universe," by Felice Maranz February 14, p. 42
1988 The Sunday Star Bulletin "Artist Todd Siler explores the universe of the mind," by Marcia Morse, Honolulu, Hawaii, November 6, p.10
1983 Tech Talk, "Artist Finds 'Cerebral Fusion' During Moment of Intuition" by China Altman, M.I.T. Newspaper - September 28, p. 5
1982 OMNI Magazine, "Painting - The Arts" by Michael Schrage, October, pp.38, 193
VIDEOTAPES ON ARTWORK (Selected):
2002 Think Like a Genius® Program for Education (27 minutes), directed and edited by Steve Feld, a six-time, Emmy-Award winning filmmaker and television producer. This videotape gives an overview of the Program (also called The ArtScience® Program) in schools, as well as documents the “Think Like a Genius…and Improve Our World!” Workshop for 150 families from the Denver-Metro area at University of Denver’s Magness Arena.
1998 Changing Minds (23 minutes), directed and edited by Ellen Sebring. Documents Siler’s exhibition at the Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Gallery with commentary by the artist on his artscience works. Features a special performance by Ornette Coleman of an original composition at the exhibition, titled “Ode To Art.”
Radical Futures (6 minutes), directed by Jeffrey Marvin (an Academy Award Nominee for his Imax film, “Voyager”) and edited by Ellen Sebring. Documents Siler's exhibition at the Ronald Feldman Gallery with commentary by the artist on his artscience works. Broadcast quality sketch for C.B.S. News program on the arts
1991 Metaphorming Minds: Journeys Into Thought Processes (22 minutes), directed and edited by Ellen Sebring. Documents Siler's large-scale artscience paintings, drawings, and mixed media installations presented in two solo exhibitions at the Boston Center for the Arts, Cyclorama Building, and the Ronald Feldman Fine Arts in New York City. The videotape is part of a proposal for a NOVA television program.
Israel National Television - The Art Work of Todd Siler (5 minutes), filmed and edited by Ayelet Heller. Documents the creation of Siler's artist's book and portfolio of prints, "Metaphorming Minds," published by Old Jaffa Press and printed at Har-El Printers and Publishers in Jaffa Israel
1987 Cerebral Art: The Art of Thought (10 minutes), directed and edited by Ellen Sebring. Presents Siler's symbolic paintings and experiments in artscience interpreting the processes of thinking, feeling and creating; with commentary by Siler and a discussion about the artwork and installation at the Center for Advanced Visual Studies, M.I.T. with the director of the Center, Otto Piene.
1984 WVEC-TV Channel 13, Norfolk, Virginia (3 minutes), presentation of Siler's multi-part artscience paintings and models exhibited in “The Year One: 1984-2001” at The Chrysler Museum in Norfolk, Virginia; aired on the 6 p.m. nightly news.
1983 Cerebreactions (11 minutes), directed and edited by Matthew Kallis. Videotape explores the concepts behind Siler's interpretive artscience drawings, paintings, and sculptures presented in his solo exhibitions at the Ronald Feldman Gallery in New York City.
1981 Cerebreactors: Inquiries Into the Biomirror (12 minutes), directed and edited by Matthew Kallis and Gregoria Rivera. Videotape documents Siler's artscience drawings, assemblages, and three-dimensional constructions, exploring the nature of mind and thought processes.
PUBLISHED MULTIPLES AND PRINT PROJECTS (Selected)
1994-95 Blast #4, "BIOINFORMATICA." Exploring the connections between physical space and information systems. Limited edition, pod-shaped containers with reproductions of artifacts created by approximately fifty noted artists Clang Reaction and
A Meditation on the Next Millennium, limited edition lithographs, 15 in. x 27 in.
1992-93 Blast #3: "Remaking Civilization," a new experimental art journal published by The X-Art Foundation in New York City. Limited edition, handmade boxes with 50 off-set reproductions in each box.(Blast was founded by Jordan Crandall and Christo and produced with the support of Richard Serra. The X-Art Foundation was established in 1990 to explore "the nature of art and its functions in socio-culture, through an ongoing investigation of scientific theory, spatial logic, and textuality.") Bookstore editions of Blast are available through Distributed Art Publishers (D.A.P.), New York, N.Y.; Gallery editions of Blast are available at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York
1991-92 JUNI Edition, produced by Clemens Weiss and Hortz Winz, Director of JUNI Journal. The limited edition wooden boxes of18 multi-colored serigraphs and multiples (33"x28") accompanied the traveling exhibition "Eighteen from New York," which commenced at Galerie Lohrl in Monchengladbach, Germany, September 15 - October 20, 1991
1991 Metaphorming Minds: Envisioning the Possibilities of Nature, a limited edition artist's book and portfolio of 37 multi-colored serigraphs on Arches 300gm paper (each print 16in. x 24in.) and 18 off-set reproductions of Siler's artwork with text, published Old Jaffa Press, Jaffa, Israel. The handbound book is an edition of 100. The box portfolio contains the same number of prints and is an edition of 130. Metaphorming Minds was presented at the Florence International Artists Book Fair in Italy, April, and the Frankfurt International Book Fair in October
1988-90 Mind: Anticipation and Chaos, a limited edition book by Rumanian writer and philosopher Mihai Nadin, published by Belser Verlag in Stuttgart and Zurich. The book contains 14 reproductions of my mixed media paintings and drawings. In addition, there are 65 monoprints that accompany Mind: Anticipation and Chaos, which was published under the special series, "Belser Presse: Milestones in Thought and Research." The monoprints were produced at Solo Press, New York, NY
1990 Blast: The Blue Box, a limited edition, boxed publication with 30 "editorial items" items by invited artists, published by
The X-Art Foundation, New York, N.Y. The items consist of lithographs, off-set reproductions, information on computer discs, photographs and mixed media artworks. The 30 artist's contributions are presented in separate units and in a randomized placement, exploring the concept of "transactional spaces." Bookstore editions of Blast are available through Distributed Art Publishers (D.A.P.), New York, N.Y.; Gallery editions of Blast are available at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York, N.Y.
1988 Metaphorms, a set of color lithographs in an edition of 30 each, published by Martina Batan = State Editions and printed at Solo Press, New York, NY. In addition, there are twelve monoprints, entitled Metaprints, with hand coloring and collage
1983-86 Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Interdisciplinary Studies in Psychology and Art, Department of Architecture. "The Architectonics of Thought: A Symbolic Model of Neuropsychological Processes."
1981-83 M. S. Vis. S. (Master of Science in Visual Studies), M.I.T.
1971-75 B. A., Bowdoin College
1973, 74 Smith College (12 College Exchange Program)
AWARDS, HONORS, AND FELLOWSHIPS (Selected):
2009 Nominee, “Leonardo da Vinci” World Award of Arts
2008 Awarded Honorable Mention at the 2008 DaVinci Institute's Colorado Inventors
Showcase as a "three dimensional imagination tool for bringing new ideas to life."
2002 Think Like a Genius® software and website for realizing human potential. Enables users worldwide to freely express themselves creating and sharing new knowledge, brainstorming and presenting ideas, and problem solving using a global “common language.” Provides a set of all-purpose, universal creativity & communication tools for making multi-dimensional symbolic models that cultivate innovative thinking, while helping improve human communication by fostering understanding. (patent pending).
2001 Forum Fellow, World Economic Forum, Davos, Switzerland; presenter
2000 Institute for Civil Society, awarded grant and matching funds for The ArtScience® Program in order to train teachers and schools to use the ArtScience methodology in their classrooms, concentrating on curriculum and staff development.This nonprofit Program (also called the Think Like a Genius Program) enables students to learn their curricular material with greater comprehension and retention, making the information more personally meaningful, purposeful and relevant to their lives. Also, the Program enables students and teachers alike to develop their passions and interests, while applying their knowledge and imagination in highly productive ways. Moreover, the ArtScience method helps realize one’s innate abilities to learn, create and perform at one’s highest level to achieve one’s goals. To date, we have trained over 200 teachers in the ArtScience methodology who are reaching over 20,000 students in 5 school districts in the Denver-Metro area.
1999 Forum Fellow, World Economic Forum, Davos, Switzerland; presenter and art exhibition
1998 Invention: “Metaphorming: Methods and Apparatuses To Enhance Cognitive Functioning and Its Manifestation Into Physical Form and Translation Into Useful Information” (patent pending; Application Number 09/882,921)
1996 Panel Member, 1996 Council of Ideas, The Gihon Foundation, Santa Fe, New Mexico, July 12-14 (Council on Ideas Alumni include: Jane Alexander, M. Cherif Bassiouni, Mary Catherine Bateson, Ana Maria Cetto, Lee Cullum, Garrett Epps, Frank Gehry, Murray Gell-Mann, Georgie Anne Geyer, Nikki Giovanni, Stephen Jay Gould, Lawrence K. Grossman, Robert D. Kaplan, Stanley Karnow, Stuart A. Kauffman, Alan Kay, Jessica Tuchman Mathews, N. Scott Momaday, Arno Penzias, Anna C. Roosevelt, Walter Shapiro, Roberto Suro, Wendy Wasserstein.)
1995 Artist-of-the-Year Award, New York City Art Teachers Association/United Federation of Teachers, presented November 11 in New York City
1994 Nominee, University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Education for "a work of outstanding educational achievement presented in the recent past with potential for world-wide impact" (Breaking the Mind Barrier, Simon & Schuster, 1990)
Awarded a federally registered trademark on “ArtScience” for use in connection with education, publications, workshops, seminars, and artwork
1993 Gold Medal Award for "most exceptional artist's book and portfolio of prints" Metaphorming Minds, Old Jaffa Press, 1991), International Book Fair, Jerusalem
1989-91 Artists' Fellowship, Meitec Intelligent Technology Corporation, Tokyo
1988, 90 Invention: "Process for Producing Design Patterns In Materials," M.I.T. patent case #3922. (Two U.S. Patents received)
1989 Co-Invention: "A Spatial-Tactile Human-Computer Interface for Computer-Aided Design," M.I.T. patent case #5155. (Received two U.S. Patents) Patent # 5,237,647 - "Computer Aided Drawing in Three Dimensions", Roberts, A.F., Sachs, E.M., Stoops, D. R., Ulrich, K. T., Siler, T., Gossard, D.C., Celniker, G.W. (August 17, 1993).
1988-79 Four Grants, Council for the Arts at M.I.T.
1987 Massachusetts Artists Foundation, Painting Fellowship, Boston
1985-86 Fulbright Fellowship to India, studying the use of symbolism and allegory in Hindu temples’ art and architecture
1984 Innovative Design Fund Award, New York, NY (and National Endowment for the Arts)
1980 Invention: "Artists' Canvas and Frame Assembly." U.S. Patent #4,190,974, March 4
1979 Scotland Council for the Arts, Travel Grant / Richard Demarco Gallery, EdinburghCreation of original design patterns, titled "High-Tech" and "Delineations," applied to mass production textile printing for the Martex and Westpoint-Pepperell Companies, New York, NY
1975-76 I.B.M. Thomas J. Watson Fellowship to France to independently pursue a career in the fine arts and continue studying Art History
1972 The William Zorach Painting Scholarship to Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, Maine
The American artist Todd Siler stands astride two worlds—art and science—and he seeks out similarities of process across the traditional barriers of these two domains of knowledge. For the past three decades he refers to this integrative work as “artscience,” as it fully melds various experiential approaches to creative inquiry and learning.
In the mid-1970s, while on an I.B.M. Thomas J. Watson Fellowship in Paris, Todd Siler created ArtScience as a process by which art integrates science and science integrates art in their adventurous acts of creative seeing, discovering, critical thinking, inventing and innovating. ArtScience is a practice of innovative thinking that enables learners of all ages to connect and transform information (i.e., data, knowledge, ideas, experiences, events, etc.) in new, purposeful and personally meaningful ways. Ultimately, it enriches the experience of learning by enhancing the personal relevance and usefulness of information.
The first visual artist ever to receive a doctorate in Interdisciplinary Studies in Psychology and Art from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Todd Siler has discovered relationships and deep connections in the sciences and the arts where few were thought to exist before. To convey his novel concepts, he has developed new ways of using our world of symbolic languages to create a global “common language”—one that enables learners of all ages, backgrounds and interests to give form to their thoughts and communicate in ways that foster understanding and collaborative learning. His playful approach to discovery, invention and innovation naturally integrates our many intelligences and welcomes all styles of learning.
Siler has been exhibiting his artworks internationally in major museums and galleries since the early 1980’s and is represented by Ronald Feldman Fine Arts in New York City. His artworks are in numerous private and public collections, including The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art (20th Century Collection), The Museum of Modern Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City, The Israel Museum in Jerusalem, The Pushkin Fine Arts Museum in Moscow and the Belsar Verlag Print Archives in Stuttgart and Zurich. His sixth solo exhibition at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts in 1997 included an original composition and performance by the pioneering jazz composer and musician Ornette Coleman.
Todd is recognized as an author, inventor, educator, but first and foremost as a visual artist; and it is his singular vision as an artist that informs all his other work. In the forward to Siler’s art publication, The Biomirror, Harvard professor and former chairman of the Fogg Art Museum, James S. Ackerman, author of Palladio (1974) and Leonardo da Vinci: Art in Science (1998), has written:
Todd Siler turns the stimuli of artistic invention in upon themselves by investigating and representing the brain that does the investigating and representing. I know of no work since the Renaissance in which the concerns of figurative art and of investigative science come closer together than the dye in Siler’s drawings, assemblages, and sculptures. They are advanced research and at the same time objects of vigorous formal quality. They demonstrate to empirical scientists the potential of model and metaphor, and they point a way for the artist of the later twentieth century to regain for visual art its historical integration with contemporary life.
In that same forward, Stephan L. Chorover, Professor of Psychology and Brain Science at MIT, has written: “Todd Siler has been producing an awesomely rich and varied corpus of paintings, drawings, collages and other works which embody and express some exciting and completely original ideas about the material and conceptual connections between the arts and sciences.” Dr. Chorover continues:
It is difficult for me to exaggerate the influence that my association with Todd Siler has had on my perception of my own field and its relations to the larger world of human affairs of which it is part. I believe him to be that rarity among us: a person whose thoughts and feelings and actions seem destined to make a real difference; one whose contributions to human understanding serves simulataneously to reflect and reinforce the creative process which is the means and the end of self-conscious human existence in the biosphere.
In the Montreal newspaper, Le Devoir “From Todd Siler to Marina Abramovic and Ulay: From a Neurological Art to A Cosmological Symbolism” (Saturday, August 15, 1987), journalist Claire Gravel writes:
“By means of his somewhat Da Vinci like works, Siler proceeds into an artistic horizon that could revolutionize the very perception of our perceptive tools…This astonishingly rich vision expresses a completely original art.”
In an April 1991 review of Siler’s work in Art In America, Ann Wilson Lloyd places Siler in the tradition of the most profound of all artist-scientist, Leonardo da Vinci:
…it is Siler’s small, conventionally framed drawings that best meld his thoughts about the brain’s activities and his actualization of them. Slightly bigger than sketchbook leaves, they are musingly Leonardo-like, with clear writing next to drawn and painted diagrams…Siler’s works most often take the size of wall-size gestural paintings on unstretched synthetic canvas a material with a scientific resonance because it is used for protective clothing in the nuclear industry. The paintings are frequently collaged, drawn on and casually notated as if circumstantial evidence of thinking were more important than formal concerns. In Boston, the Boston Center for the Art’s cavernous round Cyclorama building – itself a “metaphorm” – allowed Siler to unfurl his longest mixed-medium paintings [100-foot arcs], “Thought-Assemblies” and “The Brain Theater of Mental Imagery…His works
drew on his concepts of “metaphorming,” or the creation of metaphors that enable us to relate information from one discipline to another, and “processmorphs: things that are alike in process but unlike in form or appearance.” He asserts that the brain reflects the universe in function and form and that we become what we think about and create.
Todd Siler, “The Brain Theater of Mental Imagery,” 1983. Multi-part art installation, 12ft.H x 100 ft. L, with mounted paintings and white light hologram. Boston Center for the Arts, 1990. (Accompanied by a broadcast quality videotape.)
Through his drawings, collages, markings, and writings, observes Claude Gosselin, Director of the Centre International d’Art Contemporain de Montreal, “Todd Siler presents us with an open work in which the spectators’s eagerness to decipher the different levels of interpretation is sustained by a strange power of seducation which gives the work its strength and metaphorical quality. It is a clash of pleasure and a fear of emptiness. There is in his work the lure of light following the passages through darkness.”
Todd Siler Metaphorming Minds (Old Jaffa, Israel: Old Jaffa Press, 1991). Mixed media monotypes on 37 multi-colored serigraphs on Arches 300gm paper; each image measures 40cms x 60cms (16” x 24”). Integrated with some of the images
are collaged reproductions. Also, behind a select group of images are hand-written notations on the “Possibilities” of the
human mind and its hidden potential.
In reviewing Siler’s exhibit, entitled “Psi-Phi: Hidden Territories,” at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, Phillip Evans-Clark writes in the Italian journal, Tema Celesta: “Aesthetically, his work can enrapture the senses by the expansiveness of its scale, the poetic awesome-ness of its subject matter, the delicate contours of its abstract choreography, and the mysterious nature of its strange visual alphabet.” And Mr. Evans-Clark elaborates:
Siler fills his images with nervously drawn, concise sentences, which disappear at a distance. Conversely, when the viewer approaches the canvas, the linguistic dimension reveals itself and also signals an important change in the relationship between the work and the spectator. As one journeys into the image, picking up meaning from cryptic aphorisms, one slowly enters Siler’s own mind and abandons the comfortable, disinterested posture of normal perception to become a reader and a thinker. Siler is therefore not simply an image-maker, but a theoretician, a poet, and a dreamer. Siler, like Hermes, enjoys traveling everywhere: in formal and applied sciences, in literature, in art and in the difficult and delicate regions where they all connect
Todd Siler Metaphorms: Forms of Metaphor.
(The New York Academy of Sciences, 1988
Reviewing the same exhibit, Patricia C. Phillips writes in Artforum about some of the darker aspects of Todd Siler’s cosmology:
We all know that the human mind creates many marvelous and menacing things, but Siler’s work transforms this fact into an idea of great consequence. He manages to evoke in us a palpable sense of horror at the possibilities of imagination, as well as an equal sense of wonder at the strange and delicate operations within the mind. The world does not exist independent of human cognition or symbolic activity. Siler’s drawings and paintings do not suggest some a priori reality. He makes the Harvard psychologist Nelson Goodman’s idea of “world-making” visually concrete. He depicts through a recursive and additive vocabulary what others are just now attempting to describe.
As other artists before him, Todd Siler is fascinated by recurring images, that of the human brain, the well-spring of all human creation and civilization. His works of “artscience” (art that fully integrates science) interpret the life and potential of the human mind and its relation to the world. ArtScience represents both the physical processes of the brain and the figurative mental activities, which cannot be completely measured, defined, or put into a dimensional context with any certainty.
Todd Siler: The Art of Thought (Montreal, Quebec: Saidye BronfmanCentre, 1987).
Catalogue for solo exhibition, July 21 – August 20, 1987.
A New Yorker by birth, Todd Siler attended Bowdoin College in Maine, where he received a Bachelor of Arts in Art History and Fine Arts in 1975. He earned a Master in Visual Studies from MIT in 1981 and a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies in Psychology and Art in 1986. He was a Research Fellow at MIT’s Center for Advanced Visual Studies from 1981 to 1983 and a Visiting Artist at the Computer-Aided Design Laboratory in the Department of Mechanical Engineering from 1986-88.
Todd Siler’s books include, Think Like A Genius (Bantam Books, 1997) and Breaking the Mind Barrier (Simon and Schuster, 1990 and Touchstone Books, 1992), which was nominated for the 1994 University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Education for “a work of outstanding educational achievement with potential for worldwide impact.” Both critically acclaimed books have been translated into many languages.
The science writer, George Johnson wrote in The New York Times Book Review (December 30, 1990): “The author’s visions of strange parallels between the universes inside and outside the mind come across strongly in some of his paintings and sculptures reproduced in his book…hard-edged technological images are played off against softer images that evoke the elusiveness of things mental.” Breaking the Mind Barrier was “Noted With Pleasure” in The New York Times (February 3, 1991). Also, the MIT nuclear physicist and former director of MIT’s Program in Science, Technology and International Security, Dr. Kosta Tsipis, wrote:
Like the great Renaissance minds of the sixteenth century, Todd Siler sweeps Art & Science along unexpected dimensions of understanding. His Breaking the Mind Barrier does for art what quantum mechanics did for our understanding and appreciation of the elegance of the subatomic world: it reveals the seminal connections between our minds and the physical world around us and allows us to understand both in a new space of conceptualization. Breaking the Mind Barrier will prove to be the work of a genius.
The Mayor of New York City, CEO and founder of Bloomberg News, Michael R. Bloomberg has written:
“Think Like A Genius challenges the reader to think and perform on an inspired level. Siler’s simple approach to individual ‘genius’ is the key to every great success story.” In his testimonial for Think Like A Genius, Robert W. Galvin, Chairman of the Executive Committee, Motorola, Inc. has written: “Todd inspires us to energize the least used talent of our brain: exceptional creativity, so readily activatable and rewarding.” Adding to the critical acclaim for Think Like A Genius, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, author of Flow and Creativity, has written: “Creative artists can rarely express what is at the root of their genius. Todd Siler is an exception: his concept of metaphorming is an ingenious and useful tool for enhancing everyone’s creative thinking.”
Todd Siler is a recipient of an I.B.M. Thomas J. Watson Fellowship to Paris, France (1975-76), a Fulbright Fellowship to India (1985-86), and a Meitec Fellowship (1989-91), awarded by the Meitec Corporation in Tokyo, among other fellowships and awards. He received the 1995 “Artist-of-the-Year” Award from the New York City Teachers Association and United Federation of Teachers. In addition, he holds a number of patents on a wide range of inventions including "Spatial-Tactile Human-Computer Interfaces for Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing” Systems; “Textile Printing Technology for Producing Design Patterns In Materials” (for security printing), and “Metaphorming: Methods and Apparatuses To Enhance Cognitive Functioning and Its Manifestation Into Physical Form and Translation Into Useful Information” [patent pending].
The culmination of Siler’s thinking to date is reflected in Metaphorming Worlds (Taipei Fine Arts Museum) and Cerebralism: Creating a New Millennium of Minds. Bodies, and Civilizations (Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Inc), with an essay that sets forth the principles of a new artistic tendency. One insightful essay in Metaphorming Worlds, titled “Todd Siler: Exploring the Possibilities of ‘Art as Science’,” by Dr. Robert S. Root-Bernstein, a distinguished physiologist, science history, MacArthur Prize Fellow, and co-author of Sparks of Genius (1999), has written:
“Todd doesn’t just paint pictures that integrate fields such as art, science, and politics; he doesn’t just talk about integrating; he actually lives integrating. The science in his pictures isn’t there just as a subject or an icon, as it is in so much art about science. The science in Todd’s pictures is there because it has to be. The art is science, and the science, art—artscience and scienceart, to use Todd’s neologisms. In fact, one could easily think of Todd’s art as one neologism after another, but made by combining the disciplines of art, science, and philosophy. Indeed, the neologism, be they his verbal creations or his visual ones, emerge out of the necessity of finding a new language for discussing how things are linked within a vocabulary that has been almost completely shaped by making distinctions between things. If some people have problems understanding his
new language, it only proves how ingrained this divisive analyticism has become, and consequently, how difficult it is for most people to see over the barriers that their education has erected between them and every aspect of existence. Todd, in short, for all of the incredible scope of his images, does not use science or engineering as arcane symbols to overawe the uninitiated or to impress the gullible—he uses all of his knowledge for the purpose of creating understanding.”
Cerebralism was published in conjunction with Siler’s fifth solo exhibition at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, “Radical Futures.”
From this exploratory artwork grew Todd Siler’s exhibition, "A.R.T. Strings [All Representations of Thoughts] Link All
Things,” which was organized by the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art and the Museum of Outdoor Arts in Denver,
Colorado. Thisexhibition traveled to the Ronald Feldman Gallery, for Siler’s seventh solo show (December 2 – 24, 2004).
A.R.T.Strings is also part of an ever-evolving body of artwork, called “Adventures in ArtScience,” which is being presented at
the National Science Foundation in Arlington, Virginia (July 9 - Nov. 9, 2007) and traveling to the Tweed Museum of Art a
the University of Minnesota-Duluth (Dec. 4, 2007 - March 30, 2008).
Todd Siler, A.R.T.Strings (All Representations of Thought), Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, NYC
“Adventures in ArtScience” includes some of Siler’s most recent explorations, such as the “Fractal Reactor:
Re-Creating the Sun,” which was shown at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York City (Sept. 9 – Oct. 7, 2006)
Todd Siler, “Fractal Reactor: Re-Creating the Sun” Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, New York City
Reviewing this exhibition for Art In America (February 2007 Issue, pages 141, 142), Lilly Wei's art review,
"Todd Siler at Ronald Feldman," noted that “This star system—unlike some others—does seem to be a better way. Certainly the premise is appealing [constructing a fractal reactor based on a thermonuclear fusion system that closely replicates the actual physics and geometry of a star], and so is the art, in a Buckminster Fullerish manner. But like all marriages, this one of art and science has its ups and downs. Maybe, though, Siler should run for president with Al (An Inconvenient Truth) Gore. I’d vote for them.”
Todd Siler, “Fractal Reactor” (sculpture/model) 2000
Mary Lee Grisanti’s insightful art review of “Fractal Reactor: Re-Creating the Sun” in the NYArts Magazine (January 1, 2007 Issue) emphasized the following points about the possibilities of Siler’s concept: This is not a matter of approaching science aesthetically or viewing scientific imagery in an artistic way. It is not taking science and making it art. It is not even a fusion. “Recreating the Sun” is an extraordinary return to the source, wherein these are not two ideas or phenomena, but one.
Ronald Feldman deserves credit for recognizing Siler’s visionary potential early on. Even before Siler went to MIT, Feldman understood his relevance. “When Todd was starting out, people used to ask: Is he an artist or is he a scientist?” Feldman says. “But really art has been doing this for years. Think back to the Renaissance when people didn’t do anything without understanding that the aesthetic was a metaphor for the idea.”
The true revolutionaries not only change the fields in which they work, they change the world around them. Many artists change or expand what we recognize as art, but very few leave the landscape so transformed that life is different. Todd Siler might just be one of them.
Journalist Joy Overbeck’s article, “Local artist goes nuclear as he fuses art and science…and who knows, maybe he’ll win the Nobel Prize,” in Colorado Expression magazine (October/November 2006, pp. 72-74) explores the origins of Siler’s concept and its premises:
Essentially, physicists attempt to use the [fusion] reactor to recreate the energy-making process of the sun and its millions of fellow stars. The goal is to use the limitless energy released by the fusion process to power our cities and liberate the world from fossil fuels. The artist was thinking along these power-generating lines when suddenly a brain tsunami rocked him—the reason the fusion reactors aren’t working, he theorized, is because they’re using the wrong geometry! Siler thought using fractal or irregular geometry in the reactor design rather than Euclidean geometry would more closely replicate nature’s own star design.
As much as he’d love to see his Fractal Reactor leap out of the New York art exhibit and into a university research lab, Siler’s not counting on it. Given the vagaries of science and the monumental costs of fusion research, he knows it would take millions to get his idea even part way off the ground. Content to be a mind probe, Siler says, “I think of my model as a way to ask questions; it’s like a sculptural Rorschach for the physicists, offering a different view for them to think about. I’m really just a truth seeker, more interested in whether this can spark fresh thinking than whether it’s art or science.”
Todd Siler, “Fractal Reactor: An Initial Computational Model for An Alternative Plasma Fusion Reactor,” 2003. Two scenes from an interactive 3D visualization created by Jason Giles, content developer for the Anark Corporation; the animation is based on Siler’s storyboards and sketches.
In 1999, 2001 and 2003, he was invited to make a formal presentation of his peer-reviewed concept paper, “Fractal Reactor: A New Geometry for Plasma Fusion,” at the Symposia on Current Trends in International Plasma Fusion Research, in Washington, DC. This Conference was organized under the auspices of the Global Foundation, Inc. and in cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Naval Research Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratory.
In 2007, Siler was invited to present the Fractal Reactor concept at the International Conference series on Emerging Nuclear Energy Systems (ICENES) in Istanbul on June 3-8.
Todd Lael Siler’s concept paper, “Fractal Reactor: A New Geometry for Plasma Physics,” was published in Current Trends in International Fusion Research: Review and Assessment – Proceedings of the Third Symposium (pp. 105-120) edited by Dr. Emilio Panarella. (National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa, Canada: NRC Research Press, 2002). Two subsequent papers documenting the development of the concept -- “Fractal Reactor: An Alternative Method and Apparatus for Plasma Fusion” (pp. 411-426) and “Fractal Reactor: An Initial Computational Model for An Alternative Plasma Fusion System” -- are published in the Proceedings for the 4th Symposium and 5th Symposium, 2007, edited by Dr Emilio Panarella and Charles D. Orth. Additionally, "Fractal Reactor: Re-Creating the Sun" was published in Leonardo Journal of Art, Sciences & Technology, Vol. 40, No. 3, pp. 270-278, June (The MIT Press, 2007).
Fred Alan Wolf, (Ph.D., Theoretical Physics and Plasma Physics from UCLA, 1963), author of the American Book Award for Science Taking The Quantum Leap (1982), and consulting physicist, writer, and actor in the popular movies, "What The Bleep
Do We Know?," has written:
"In the design of today's fusion devices it's the function that determines the form. By that I mean that plasma physicists know how to solve the usual Euclidian geometric (in my day Vlasov-Maxwell) equations of plasma physics and magnetohydrodynamics and so tend to design machines that their equations can describe. Hence they can solve the theoretical problem, because their minds have been formed to follow the functions of classical science and math. Unfortunately, nature doesn't work that way. It seems we have turned the problem upside down-- it should be form determining function as Dr. Siler indicates . In other words we can see what Nature designs so why not follow her?"
Todd Siler’s Disclaimer concerning the “Fractal Reactor” concept and project, which is part of the exhibition,
The Mind And All It Creates, at the Fort Collins Museum of Contemporary Art (January 15 – March 25, 2010)
The “Fractal Reactor” concept and project are in an early stage of development. I want my audience to know that the concept has not been scientifically validated, and that the publication of my concept papers in reputable science and technology journals does not imply that it has.
My exploratory work on the Fractal Reactor concept serves one purpose: namely, to raise fundamental questions about how we might best design & build safe, reliable, environmentally-friendly nuclear fusion energy systems that can one day fulfill our growing energy needs and help create a sustainable future.
The artifacts and prototypes created from this adventure in discovery consider some alternative ways of constructively building on the scientific knowledge about harnessing the Sun’s unlimited sources of energy.
As I continue to develop this concept—improving on the design and functionality of the Fractal Reactor—I plan to submit this work for formal peer-review by the nuclear fusion scientists. It’s simply part of my ongoing effort to grow the conversation about the scientific and technological possibilities of this innovation.
I welcome all collaborations with nuclear fusion specialists who can create the necessary mathematical models and test these models through empirical studies. Only then can we properly evaluate and assess the merits of this concept. Only then will we be able to say beyond a shadow of a doubt whether or not this concept is good or bad, or right or wrong. Until that day, any praise or criticism of this concept is a matter of opinion not fact.
For more information on Todd's work and adventures, please visit these websites:
Or, Google Todd Siler and pick-and-choose from the many links to his work.
Metaphorming Life: The Work of A.R.T.
Realizing human potential. That’s my life’s work. Those three words sum up everything I live for and aspire to accomplish through my art.
For me, A.R.T. is All Representations of Thought: from the poetic gestures of dancers to the abstract symbolic models of chemists; from back-of-the-envelop idea doodles to rigorous proofs by pure mathematicians; from the Aha! we spontaneously utter at a moment of breakthrough thinking to the technological marvels we create in collaboratively harnessing our creative genius; from our silent inner reflections on life to our tangible responses to all the things nature shares with us every second of everyday that challenge our senses and rev our imagination.
Since childhood, my art has been one curious adventure in exploring the nature of the human mind to glean how we create, learn, invent, collaborate and communicate.
At the core of all my work is Metaphorming. Nearly three decades ago, I coined the words Metaphorm and Metaphorming to describe these ageless communication tools that everyone can use to realize their creative potential. They’re “engines” of creativity, invention, learning, and discovery that power our communications.
Metaphorming is derived from the Greek words meta which means “between,” “after,” “beyond,” “transcending,” and phora, or “transference.” Metaphorming enables us all to move beyond the constraints of verbal thought, transferring from one object to another a new meaning or set of associations.
I refer to my works of art as Metaphorms. These embody visual metaphors, physical analogies, signs, symbols, stories, allegories, puns, premises, and much more.
Metaphorming is the act of connecting Metaphorms to stimulate breakthroughs and discoveries, and to generate inventions and innovations. It increases the meaning and usefulness of all information, ideas, knowledge, experience, and wisdom.
Metaphorming is the essence of what our minds do when we are “thinking differently”; when we’re searching for personal meaning and purpose; when we’re seeing beauty and seeking truth; when we’re enjoying the complexity of nature, and exploring the nature of complexity.
To understand the world of Metaphorms and Metaphorming is to see beyond the categorization and compartmentalization of our acts of creating and our creations. It is to continually transform the meanings and uses of things and ideas by connecting and applying them in new contexts and situations. Recall the mantra of the 20th century polymath and Renaissance thinker, R. Buckminster Fuller, and novelist E.M. Forster: “Only connect.” Leonardo da Vinci may have simply said: Metaphorm it!
Know the thought through which all things are steered through all things.
Heraclitus, Greek philosopher and mystic, 500 B.C.
Don’t just know “the thought.” Metaphorm it!
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