The 2011 Artist-in-Residence Joe Norman graduated with a degree in Product Design and worked with several design consulting firms for a number of years on projects ranging from children's toys to fast food to sport utility vehicles to cleaning products. He then taught art and science at the middle and high school levels before focusing on handmade and site-specific furniture and sculpture, specifically that which builds environments that support and promote communities. Many of his designs are direct results of working with schools, families, and businesses to develop places that encourage people to work and be together in positive ways.
Joe works mainly by sculpting found materials. Often times these materials have lived their 'useful' life and are discarded. Many still have an emotional resonance, though; they are like the smell of a favorite food from childhood that sends us back through decades of memories. He believes that we have spent our entire lives building relationships with bicycles, ammunition casings, and plywood even if we're never owned any of them. We know what they were used for, and when presented in a new and beautiful way that relationship continues.
Joe's work can be seen at www.blueboathomedesign.com.