"Biologically, physiologically, we are not so different from each other; historically, as narratives - we are each of us unique."
Oliver Sacks, M.D., 1985, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat. Forever my favorite author, physician, inspiration.
My life so far has been guided by a never-ending web of dichotomies: Born by the ocean and raised in the mountains, brought up by a computer technician and an artist, it seems natural that I would spend my time weaving together opposites. I believe that things we see as antithetical are normally one and the same, and in pursuit of my lifelong passion of understanding what it means to be human, I've found you need a little bit of science and art.
For most of my youth I was told to choose, to pick one thing, that my interests were too all over the place: in high school I enrolled concurrently in nine years worth of four different languages, later directed a business that funded a gamut of international work, at 17 taught myself piano and produced an original album, conducted neurosurgical research as an undergraduate, had over half a dozen solo art exhibitions, and am currently following my dream becoming a physician, the first in my family.
What started as "acceptable well-roundedness" quickly evolved into "jack of all trades, master of none." As my school counselors and advisors insisted I sort my mess of interests if I wanted to do anything meaningful, I was, in secret, waiting patiently for my chance to show how it all fit together, that there was some method to the madness. Then, after attending Duke University fully funded by scholarships, I graduated in 2018 with a degree of my own creation, titled "Human Creativity: Evolutionary Neuroaesthetics," that used art and science in tandem to discover how the emergence of aesthetic expression is woven into paradigms in philosophy, neuroscience, and evolutionary anthropology. More recently I completed my Master's of Science in Neuroaesthetics at the University of London, Goldsmiths College, where I wrote my dissertation on empathy and the visual language of pain.
In carving out my own unique spaces, I endeavor to do the same for others, and hope that in making connections and serving people, I can better understand how humans live and express themselves, and look at things in unconventional ways.
Let's play a game of "Where is She in this Group Photo?"