Vermont Makers is an interdisciplinary collective that brings art, programs and ideas to museums, galleries, colleges, universities, K-12 education and the public square.
Vermont Makers was founded in 2011, learn more about the first two+ exciting years in this graphic timeline
Vermont Makers Founding Members and Core:
Jenn Karson, Founder
Artist/Producer Jenn Karson makes art with a strong sense of place. She has performed on stage, in bars, basements, garages, and at the drive-in. She creates both indoor and outdoor installations for urban and rural places and exhibits in both galleries and nontraditional places of display. Trained as a classical singer and musician, she transitioned into sound work after releasing four original sound recordings with the alternative pop bands Zola Turn and Bad Ju Ju. She received an MFA in Design and Technology at the San Francisco Art Institute and a BA in Political and Environmental Sciences at the University of Vermont.
She founded Vermont Makers in 2011, an interdisciplinary collect that brings art, programs and ideas to museums, galleries, colleges, universities, K-12 education and the public square. Jenn and her partners initiated Vermont Libraries and Makers Spark A Culture of Innovation in 2014, producing 28 summer STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) programs for 15 Vermont Libraries. She is the Director of Communications and a Lecturer with the University of Vermont’s College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences, where she supervises the fabrication and prototyping lab (Vermont Fab Lab).
Rebecca Schwarz works across disciplines to enrich health through art on individual, collective and Earth based levels. Her art is inspired by patterns in nature with technology as one more layer of patterning. She has a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in sculpture and an MFA in interdisciplinary arts focused on community engaged art, teaching and ecological art. Rebecca teaches at Champlain College and coordinates Art from the Heart, connecting children, families and caregivers with play and creativity in the hospital.
Ken Howell strives to be a prolific artist and man of leisure. He falls short. Routinely. Will our underdog hero transcend the obstacles that tether him to a life more ordinary? Ken is an Assistant Professor in Champlain College’s MFA in Emergent Media Program, and an organizer of all things Maker in Vermont; including sitting on the board of the Generator Makerspace. Creatively, he is interested in tension and balance: of intuition and logic; of self and other, of dislocations in time and space pervasive in our culture; of systems and antisystems; and of the dominant schema of binary oppositional pairings that presume, and often cause, instability in the first place. He also has a collection of stamped pennies.
John Cohn (pictured top photo) is currently an IBM Fellow in IBM Corporate Strategy. John received his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering at MIT, and earned a Ph.D. at Carnegie Mellon University. John has authored more than 30 technical papers and has contributed to four books on design automation. He has more than 60 patents issued or pending in the field of design automation, methodology, and circuits.
John is active in education issues at a local, state and national level. He frequently takes his traveling “Jolts and Volts” electricity show to schools, community groups, universities and museums across the US . John is so passionate about promoting science and engineering that he spent 59 days living and inventing in an abandoned steel mill as part of Discovery Channel’s new technical survival show “The Colony”.
Throughout his career John has used his technical skills and passion to enable the creative visions of artists, musicians, activists and educators around the world. He loves using the mediums of light, sparks, sound and motion to bring science and art together to surprise, educate and entertain. .. and just for the heck of it. John lives in a restored schoolhouse in Northern Vermont with his family and is eager to share his love of science and engineering with anyone who will listen.
Emeriti (Those who were crucial to our beginnings!)