CRANBROOK ACADEMY OF ART
A continental nomad, Helen was born in New Zealand, then spent her formative years in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has a BFA in Graphic Design from CCA. After 4 1/2 years in the professional world, she is pursuing an MFA to investigate what it means to operate a hybrid practice. Her most recent travels involved a week at The Ventriloquist Summerschool in Oslo. Currently, Helen collaboratively runs d0t.biz, a free artist’s residency, publishing press, and library with Alex Meiser.
WHERE WERE YOU BORN AND WHERE DO YOU LIVE NOW?
Born in Wellington, New Zealand, land of sheep and hobbits. Now I’m from San Francisco.
LEFTY OR RIGHTY?
MORNING PERSON OR NIGHT OWL?
FICTIONAL OR HISTORICAL CHARACTER YOU’VE ALWAYS IDENTIFIED WITH?
The old woman in Tampopo who sneaks around a store secretly squishing all the food. I have a tactile obsession.
ARE YOU MUSICAL AND/OR DO YOU PLAY AN INSTRUMENT?
No, I used to kick the piano when my mum would make me practice.
FAVORITE CHILDHOOD TV SHOW?
Hey Arnold and Recess
LAST BOOK YOU READ?
Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre, Experiment Marathon by Hans Ulrich Obrist/Olafur Eliasson, Relational Aesthetics by Nicolas Bourriaud
No but I have a pet-shaped hole in my heart
WHAT LANGUAGES ARE YOU FLUENT IN?
English, some French, 5% Mandarin
Koyaanisqatsi by Godfrey Reggio
FAVORITE FINE ARTIST?
Isa Genzken and Tauba Auerbach
FAVORITE FREE TIME ACTIVITY?
Hiking and camping
LAST COMPLIMENT YOU GOT?
“These waffles are a perfect balance of sweetness.”
DO YOU COLLECT ANYTHING?
Yes. I’m currently amassing a heap of puffy paint and various multi-coloured cleaning tools (sponges specifically)
COLOR USED MOST OFTEN IN YOUR DESIGN?
TYPEFACE USED MOST OFTEN?
Space Mono and Druk
GREATEST STRENGTH/WEAKNESS AS A DESIGNER?
I can work relatively fast and follow my instincts confidently. But I get hung up on details, sometimes you just need to let go.
IF YOU WERE NOT A DESIGNER, WHAT WOULD YOU BE?
A MANTRA OR SAYING YOU LIVE BY?
Harmony makes small things grow, lack of it makes great things decay ‑ Sallust