Digital Arts and New Media: MFA: Collaboration, Innovation, Social Impact

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Gene A Felice II

MFA Class of 2014


I am an artist, educator, designer and instigator in search of creative community.   For the past five years I have lived and worked in the city of Asheville North Carolina and found illumination within its mountains and forests.  I’ve built bridges between artists, non-profits and local businesses, cultivating inventive collaboration.


Digital Arts and New Media form a fluid nexus for my work, providing a point of intersection to evolve new hybrids of nature and technology.  Through motors, sensors and microcontrollers such as the Arduino or Basic Stamp I am able to interact directly with the viewer. Video & Animated Imagery viewed through projection and alternative screens give me the ability to transform 3D space and surface through the vehicle of light. To support these new modes of technology, I created a portable power generating system titled the “P2“ supplying off-the-grid electricity. Rapid Prototyping gives me a precise method to export my visualizations as fully realized objects. A hybrid of these interests culminates in my outdoor, interactive installation titled “The Screen Doors of Perception”.


My undergraduate work in Ken Rinaldo and Amy Young’s Art & Tech program at the Ohio State University, established a fluent vocabulary in this ever shifting, hybrid medium. During a yearlong internship in Ann Hamilton’s studio, I developed a greater sense of empathy, history and quality in my work.  After graduation, I was quickly sucked into the world of graphic / web design, becoming versed in industry level production work and creative exhaustion. Opening a new door to education, I was asked to teach as a visiting artist at OSU.  In a way, I was privileged to experience an unofficial grad school experience for the two years that I worked there.  While teaching the beginner and advanced 3D modeling and animation classes and developing a new Rapid Prototyping lab, I became intimately woven into the graduate, undergraduate and faculty communities. Rapid Prototyping gave me a new creative process for realizing my ideas with unparalleled accuracy and speed. My interactive sculpture series titled “A Rapid Progression” is the product of leading this unique program.


At this point in my life I realized it was time for a massive shift in my work and environment.  I was seeking a new balance between the technology-saturated world that I was sinking into and the call of the mountain, the river and the tree.  Backcountry hikes in the Smokey Mountains led me to the city of Asheville North Carolina where I quickly found the perfect place to find the balance that I was seeking.  Since moving to Asheville, my newfound balance between technology and nature has been equaled only by my search for and cultivation of new artistic communities.  This includes volunteering as the Art Director with the Bob Moog Foundation, producing three major projects including 3D visualizations of the future Moogseum, The “Mini-Moogseum” permanent installation and the group show “Pushing the Envelope:  Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release”.  For two years I’ve worked with the Media Arts Project and the Black Mountain College museum on the {Re}HAPPENING community art event on the original campus of BMC.  I am the lead instigator of this event, coordinating over 50 artists and 400 guests each year.  It is a rare moment in time where I am able to make use of all my skill sets while also bridging the gap between all of the students, educators, non-profits, businesses and fellow artists that I work with throughout the year.  As a participating artist I have collaborated on two projects including “Omni-Present Orbs” a floating, sculptural projection installation anchored to the surface of Lake Eden and “Quasi-Equivalence” a floating performance space and projection sphere, dedicated to the legacy of Buckminster Fuller.


I have had the opportunity to teach at the University of North Carolina Asheville in their New Media program, instructing in advanced flash development and alternative video installation and performance.  I’ve taught at the Odyssey Community School for the past 3 years, leading their high & middle school art and technology programs and have co-created the Creative Technology & Arts Center where I am the director of visual arts.  This 5,000 sq. ft. space has given me the room, tools and opportunity to develop a community arts space from the ground up.


I now begin the next chapter in the adventure at the University of California Santa Cruz, within the Digital Arts & New Media MFA program.  I look forward to new directions & collaborations within the realms of art and technology and hope to build bridges between disciplines and focus within.

Research Interests: 

Rapid Prototyping / 3D Printing


Video Projection Mapping

Interactive Art Installation

Mold Making & Casting

Community Art Instigation

Education and Training: 
BFA from the Ohio State University's Art & Tech Program
Selected Exhibitions: 

12/03/11 “PULSE A Journey through Light, Rhythm and Movement” > The Creative Technology & Arts Center, Asheville NC A group performance, multi-media installation and interactive light lab for all ages.

10/08/11 “10^10 Blow Out” > Pink Dog Studio, Asheville NC

A fundraiser event with layered performance and installation work. In collaboration with David McConville, I
created a wall mounted video projection installation focused on the theme of Charles Eames “Powers of Ten”.


09/01/11 > 10/01/11 “A Rapid Progression” > UNCA Highsmith gallery, Asheville NC

I was asked to be the fall semester visiting artist for Fall Semester 2011. This is the final version of this series of rapid prototyped sculptures, with 5 new pieces completing the evolution. &

06/09/11 > 06/30/11 “Pushing the Envelope: Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release” > The Asheville Area Arts Council, Asheville NC A group art show for the Bob Moog Foundation. I curated the show and collaborated with David McConville on “Creation Story” a cymatics based sound visualization system.

04/09/11 “{Re}HAPPENING 2011”, Group Art Show / Fundraiser for the Black Mountain College Museum & The Media Arts Project > Black Mountain NC
I am the director of this annual event, dedicated to moving the history and spirit of the Black Mountain college, into the future. I am also a participating artist and co-created “Quasi-Equivalence” for this 2nd annual event.

03/12/11 “{Pre}HAPPENING” > the Walnut wine bar, Asheville NC
A pre event for the 2011 {Re}HAPPENING event. Participating artists creating ephemeral, site specific work installation, multi-media and performance

03/20/10 “{Re}HAPPENING a feast for the senses”, Group Art Show / Fundraiser for the Black Mountain College Museum & The Media Arts Project > Black Mountain NC

I am the director of this annual event, dedicated to moving the history and spirit of the Black Mountain college, into the future. I am also a participating artist and co-created “Omni-Present Orbs” for this inaugural event.

06/10/09 “MiniMoogseum” Installation for the Bob Moog Foundation with Ribbon {permanent installation} Cutting by the Beastie Boys > The Orange Peel Music Hall, Asheville NC
The creation of an interactive, musical museum case that simultaneously educates the viewer through site and sound. &

5/30/09 “Art in the Mountains / The Screen Doors of Perception” > The Big Sandy Mush Community, Asheville NC

An outdoor, interactive, green powered installation & outdoor art performance show. I organized this event to debut my

project, “The Screen Doors of Perception” and to feature 10 artists from Asheville NC, Columbus OH and Chicago IL. Works ranged from installation to multi-media, to sound and performance.

3/13/09 “Code Name: Open Source (Media Arts Project)” > Asheville Art Museum / Pack Place, Asheville NC

I installed the p2 bike with a LCD panel mounted on the handlebars, with controls for up to 5 different camera views set
up around the space. This show also included a preview of various parts of my up coming “Screen Doors of Perception” installation.

01/12/09 “Moogseum” > debut at NAMM 09’, Anaheim, CA

The creation & debut of a 3D visualization / architecture design for a future museum dedicated to the life and
legacy of Bob Moog, currently under development in Asheville NC. &

3/07/08 > 3/11/08 “Art Outside” > The Enchanched Forest, Austin Texas

An outdoor, multi-media and performance based art installation, powered by the p2 generator bike. Our crew of 8 artists treked from Columbus Ohio to Austin texas, to collaborate within this mad world of art creation. &