I am a writer, painter, historian, and teacher articulating the interconnectedness of diverse life forms on earth and beyond. In all media, my current work illuminates the fluid lines between realms such as male-female, able-disabled, human-animal, life-death, and the meeting places of land, water and sky. I use artistic process to also explore atypical morphologies and the interplay of visible and nonvisible aspects of embodiment in animal, plant, and mineral worlds.
I will devote my time at Ragdale to the production of With Finn and Wing: Growing Up Amphibious in a Nuclear Age, a graphic novel/memoir about growing up transgender in the 1960s and ‘70s in the midst of environmental devastation, family disability and the Vietnam anti-war and feminist movements. It recounts my childhood from age 5 when the Donald C. Cook Energy Center (a twin reactor nuclear power plant) began construction half a mile from my home on the shores of Lake Michigan. The memoir hinges on the inextricability of my early attachment to the land, growing sense of environmental crisis, and the challenges of articulating a gendered self-sense to others prior to the languages of transgender. In particular, it highlights young efforts to nurture connection through art and an overriding capacity to find solace and congruence with other beings when we are all at risk.
I teach at University of Wisconsin, Madison. Prior publications include Finding the Movement: Sexuality, Feminist Activism, and Contested Space (2007), and Transfeminist Perspectives in and Beyond Transgender and Gender Studies (2012).