#MeToo, #YesAllWomen, and Men Who Can Do No Wrong
"I fought the law..." ink drawing from Heartwood series, by Jenie Gao

#MeToo, #YesAllWomen, and Men Who Can Do No Wrong

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#MeToo and #YesAllWomen tell a common story. A man wronged a woman and got away with it. I'm grateful, of course, for the courage and camaraderie of women to be…

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Thoughts following the Women’s March

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Our future generations will remember that on January 21st, 2017, 2.9 million people joined the Women's March for peace and equal rights in an environment where we have been incited…

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Art Residency at the Madison Bubbler

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When I first learned that Wisconsinites called water fountains "bubblers" I laughed and thought it was ridiculous. Now, after more than six years of living in Wisconsin, I'll be the…

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“Only a fool trips on what’s behind him”
Jenie Gao running through electrical wire at the finish line of the Tough Mudder

“Only a fool trips on what’s behind him”

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"Only a fool trips on what's behind him." I had a thrilling, amazing, tumultuous, nerve-wracking, at times unpredictable, unforgettable, educational, creative, and fulfilling 2016. Full of growing pains and gains,…

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Today, we wear white

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When I was a kid, my parents pounded into my head how lucky I am to have been born in the US. My mom, especially, emphasized how lucky as a…

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In Pursuit of Purpose

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I've been thinking a lot about what makes for meaningful work. People often think that finding meaning is the same as finding happiness. More accurately, it's about being willing to…

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Our Stories Share the Same Roots: A Community Mural Project
With fellow artist Gabriela Riveros and some of our students from Escuela Verde who worked on the mural.

Our Stories Share the Same Roots: A Community Mural Project

It's been a really good summer, in many ways. Full of laughter and play. Weekend trips. Camping. Outdoor excursions and inside jokes. Crackling fires. Summer pies. At the same time,…

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What God Looks Like

My mother once told me the story of a cartoon she saw in a newspaper some years ago, which explained God. In the cartoon, God is a faceless, featureless oval on a table. People come…

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Rules are made to be…
Flat Pictures of High Places - ink and watercolor drawing by Jenie Gao

Rules are made to be…

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I'm a lover of paradox, for those who didn't know, especially the man-made ones. In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, you need a parking permit to keep your car on the street at night.…

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Art and Leadership: the power and purpose of creativity
"The Substance of Your Beauty," ink and watercolor drawing by Jenie Gao

Art and Leadership: the power and purpose of creativity

I recently wrote an article called “The Myth of the Starving Artist—and what it can teach us about job security.” In it, I discuss how society’s attitude towards art parallels…

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