THE ALCHEMY OF CREATIVITY
An Illustrated Lecture by Chip Sullivan
The few lines I draw on the paper… help me to a better comprehension of physical objects. The more closely and precisely one observes particulars, the sooner one arrives at the perception of the whole.
Chip Sullivan’s ecological narrative charts a map to a world of wonder, imagination, and mystery. For decades, Chip has expounded on the meaning and perception of landscape through his innovative pedagogy, representational techniques, and writing. The philosophy and application of sustainable design through the lens of art and ecology has been the consistent focus of his explorations. Chip will outline a process for creative practice that builds upon historic approaches while imagining new possibilities for a “functional metaphysics” of landscape architecture.
Design is magic, teaching is my passion, and the creative journey is our destination.
Professor Sullivan is an artist and landscape architect who maintains a lifelong commitment to exploring the potential of the garden to create sustainable environments. Early in his career Chip developed a series of experimental gardens that reinterpreted traditional garden forms, applying classical and historical design elements to contemporary landscapes.
Chip Sullivan has devoted his career to promoting landscape architecture as an art form. His work, which illustrates the delicate balance between humans and nature, has been exhibited in galleries throughout the United States, Canada and Italy. Chip’s site specific environmental installations incorporate optical devices such as the Claude Mirror, Spectra Scope and Camera Obscura to heighten the observer’s perception of the landscape.
Professor Sullivan is the author of Drawing the Landscape, a popular treatise on drawing and the creative process, now in its 4th edition. His beautifully illustrated book Garden and Climate is a detailed analysis of the history of energy conserving landscape design. It received a merit award from the American Society of Landscape Architects. Daydreams of Frascati, a collaboration with poet Stephen Rodefer, has been reprinted in an anthology of Rodefer’s poems titled Call It Thought. Inspired by the graphic novel concept, Sullivan’s latest book Illustrated History of Landscape Design, co-authored with Elizabeth Boults, uses storyboards, visual narratives and illustrative timelines to illuminate the history of landscape architecture. Since 2006 Chip has produced a series of comics for Landscape Architecture Magazine titled “Creative Learning”. The series focuses on the creative process and the history of landscape representation. The drawings were exhibited at Clemson University, a breakthrough show of landscape comics in the U.S. His latest book, Cartooning the Landscape (UVA Press, 2016) concerns the metaphysics of drawing and learning how to ‘see.’ The art work from this book was recently exhibited at the Art and Design Center in San Francisco. Sullivan’s latest museum show; Slusky and Sullivan: Sculptures, Drawings and Related Antics, curated in 2014 at the Richmond Art Center, a nationally recognized museum which promoted the career of many notable bay-area artists such as Richard Diebenkorn, Jay DeFeo, Wayne Thiebaud and Peter Voulkos. Co-authored with Joe Slusky, the Impulse to Draw; Empowering Imagination for the Electronic Age, is a lavishly illustrated manifesto on creativity, imagination and drawing (Norfolk Press, 2014).
In the spring of 2009 Sullivan was awarded a fellowship at the MacDowell Colony, the renowned arts community in Peterborough, New Hampshire. In 2007 he was recognized for excellence in teaching from the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture. In 1999 Chip received a Rockefeller Foundation grant to the Bellagio Study Center in Lake Como, Italy, and a fellowship at the Ligurian Center for the Arts and Humanities in Bogliasco, Italy. He was the 1985 Fellow in Landscape Architecture at the American Academy in Rome. Sullivan was the subject of a documentary titled “The Professor” for a series of films on creativity by Emmy award winning director Allan Holzman. Chip is 2016 recipient of the Jot D. Carpenter Teaching Medal one of the highest awards the American Society of Landscape Architects presents
Chip Sullivan received his BLA and MURP from the University of Florida. He also studied landscape painting and drawing at the Arts Students League in New York City.