an art director & designer with 25+ years experience working with national and international clients
I earned a BFA in graphic design from SUNY New Paltz in 1992 and an MFA in 2D design from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan in 1995. I studied under Muneera Umedaly Spence and Katherine McCoy, respectively.
As Director of Design at MASS MoCA for 8+ years, I helped put the country's largest arts center on the world's cultural map by designing the museum's identity system, exhibition and wayfinding signage, print collateral, catalogs and web presence. Some of that work is viewable here. I started at MASS MoCA in 1995—as employee number two—four years before the public opening in May 1999.
I left MASS MoCA in 2003 to co-found id29.
“We basically quit our jobs, bought a couple of Macs, and called everyone we knew to tell them about our new gig. A few old friends quickly became new clients, and we haven't looked back since.”
id29 is a relatively small but mighty, full-service creative agency—located in a 19th-century former collar factory in Troy, NY. We love what we do and we do what we love extremely well.
Since opening our doors, id29 has collaborated to build powerful brands, campaigns and marketing strategies for clients such as: Cobra PUMA Golf, Pitney Bowes, Firefly Bicycles, The Steve Case Foundation, Union College, The Travel Channel and Revolution Money, and was the agency behind Scholastic's national campaign for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in 2007.
I established the MASS MoCA Design Department in 1995 and personally oversaw all aspects of creative production to brand and promote the museum and performing arts venue for our public opening in May 1999 through fall 2003—when I left to co-found id29 in Troy, NY. At id29 since its inception, I have been responsible for the design direction of a small to mid-level design and advertising agency with regional, national and international clients. I've managed and art directed our design team during that time, building our reputation for creative excellence based upon sound business strategy and research.
I frequently lecture on design, and have written for design publications such as Speak Up and HOW Magazine. I'm a long-time member of AIGA Upstate New York—the Professional Association for Design—whose mission is to build and promote the Upstate New York design community and advance design as a vital cultural force. I've been programming AIGA UPSTNY events in the Capital District since 2008. In 2016, I served a 2-year term as President of AIGA Upstate NY, helping grow the organization's member base and outreach to new levels.
In 2010, I was named by Graphic Design USA as one of the top 50 People to Watch. In fact, my name is right next to Saul Bass on that list. It's alphabetical ;)
Some of my design work can be found in:
I live in Brunswick, NY with my family and enjoy fishing in the Adirondacks, playing in the local over 40s soccer league, and yelling at the television when Liverpool F.C. are playing.
I'm a new member of the Sons of the American Revolution, having recently discovered my great-great-great-great-great grandfather, Morris Barto, fought for 6+ years in the Continental Army at the Battles of Saratoga and Monmouth, among others. Here's a pic of his discharge papers, signed by George Washington himself. Genealogy ftw!