Innovators & Artists in Residence

Interested in being an innovator or creative-in-residence at the SEED Lab House? Email your bio, a project idea (research, creative) or need, and how it would connect to SEED Lab’s priorities of climate + future:

Artist-in-residence, January 2021

Left: Acacia Johnson (b. 1990). Pink Qamutik, Beaver Mitts, 2018. Digital print. Right: Acacia Johnson (b. 1990). High Five (Horizon’s First Seal), 2018. Digital print.

Acacia Johnson is a photographer, artist, and writer from Alaska, focused on human relationships to wilderness. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Johnson received a Fulbright grant to Canada in 2014, to overwinter on Baffin Island. Since then, she has been increasingly interested in anthropological themes in the Arctic and Antarctica. Her work is housed in collections including the Anchorage Museum and the Smithsonian Museum of American History, and has been featured by numerous publications, including National Geographic, TIME, and NPR. Johnson also works as a seasonal expedition guide and lecturer in Greenland, Svalbard, the Canadian Arctic and Antarctica, where she lectures on photography and visual representations of the Polar Regions. She has made over 55 expeditions to the Polar Regions for work and personal projects and is currently pursuing her MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Virginia.

During her residency, Johnson will be focused on developing her writing, as well as photography and film projects, such as one that features women in Antarctica.

Artist-in-residence, January — MARCH 2021

Rejoy Armamento working on a mural outside Satori AK.

Rejoy Armamento is an illustrator and muralist based in Anchorage, Alaska. She works with small, local businesses by bringing their brand identity to life through meaningful visual storytelling on walls and windows. Her bold, vibrant designs blend realism with the ethereal— dreamlike, and in a way, familiar. She is constantly exploring ways to adapt her style across different platforms like skateboard decks, screen-printing and photography.

As a child of immigrant parents, Rejoy has always lived in fluid hyphenation—one foot in a traditional Filipino setting and the other in modern American culture. Such an upbringing along with living a life of travel, has deeply inspired her work. She strives to represent diversity in her portraits and shine light on the various colors of humanity.

Rejoy’s purpose is to help her clients find their voice in order to connect with their audience in an impactful way. She has contributed to several group exhibitions around Anchorage as well as a solo show in Talkeetna. Her clientele has included Wild Scoops, Catalyst Cannabis, Burn and Bloom, Uncle Leroy’s Coffee and many more. Although she has primarily worked in Alaska, her goal is to befriend and collaborate with artists around the world painting walls together.

Artist-in-residence, January — APRIL 2021

JiIabao Li. Glacier's Lament, 2020. Video. Performed by Lindsay Clark, James Cheng and Anouk Otsea.

Working at the intersection of emerging technology, art and design, Jiabao Li creates new ways for humans to perceive the world. She works across nature, humans’ designed environment and belief structures and creates works addressing climate change, humane technology, and a just, sustainable future. Her mediums include wearable, robot, AR/VR, projection, performance, software, installation. Her SEED Lab work will focus on her Glacier project, and include an online exhibition, research and community connections.

Glaciers are sentinels of climate change. They are the most visible evidence of global warming today. This series of work embodies the beauty, rapid change, fragility, destructive power, and magnificence of glaciers. At the same time, they challenge the audience with the dramatic, irreversible ecological damages from climate change.

In Glacier’s Lament, Li and her collaborators used data from glacier melting in the past 60 years to compose music and dance with local musicians who have watched the recession of the Mendenhall glacier over their lifetimes in Juneau, Alaska. Each note is one season in a year. In the winter, the glacier is frozen so the pitch is low. In the summer, the melting rate rises so the pitch is high. Towards the end, the melting overflows into spring and autumn, and the melting in the summer becomes faster. 

Li will also be developing an interactive VR installation that tells the story of a relationship between a girl and a piece of glacier, where as the girl grows up, the existence of the glacier is threatened. The other is a confession booth in a public space. Li will set up two-way live-stream cameras in Matanuska Glacier. The sound, melting, and calving of the glacier will be live-streamed to the booth. Visitors can step inside and confess their contributions to climate change, back-streamed to the glacier. It will also be streamed online so that people around the world can join, especially during COVID times.