Amy Devers 

Faculty, Furniture Design Department

Host of the first-ever TEDxRISD Event

Amy Devers is a podcaster, Emmy Award-winning television personality, designer, fabricator, and educator. A designer/ fabricator of furniture, interiors and fine art, Devers has made a career in media as the host of several television series focused on international design, architecture, original furniture design & build, home improvement, and food. Currently, Devers is Host & Producer of Clever, a podcast that offers a window into the humanity behind design through candid conversations with leading creatives from all disciplines.Devers teaches Furniture Design at RISD and is also a frequent guest critic and lecturer at academic institutions, keynote speaker, and design juror.

Hillel O’ Leary

Faculty, Industrial Design Department

Hillel O’Leary is a non-binary, culturally Jewish sculptor, artist, educator, and multidisciplinary designer. Their work centers on a reckoning with the violence of toxic masculinity, the search for safety through camouflage, and the creation of sacred space. In their talk, Hillel will speak about their lifelong journey of unraveling their identity and how they channel that into their artistic practice to create work that guides others to discover and accept their true selves.

Jack Madden 

Alumni, MFA Digital+ Media

Jack Madden is an astrophysicist and artist working toward humanizing our understanding of the universe through research-based art. Using his experience as a scientist, an EMT, and an artist, Jack researches and creates installations and digital work at the intersection of art, science, and philosophy. In his talk, Jack will unravel his path toward making art and experiences that bridge the gap between unfathomable scientific discovery and genuine human understanding.

Ruchika Nambiar 

Student, MA 2024 Global Arts & Cultures

Ruchika Nambiar is an interdisciplinary artist, designer, writer, and researcher whose work ranges from artist books to graphic novels, and miniature dioramas to writing and academic research. Her work experiments with hybrid and interactive forms of storytelling, creating playful worlds of wonder & whimsy. In her talk, Ruchika will unravel how to use a fluid, interdisciplinary approach to escape the limitations of our discipline and return to our greatest source of magic and empowerment: the ability to create.

Peter Nulton

Faculty, Theory of History, Art & Design

Peter Nulton is an archaeologist working in Classical and Maritime archaeology.  In the decades since completing his Ph.D. at Brown, he has conducted several excavations and research projects in the Mediterranean. Funded by a Fulbright grant, he published a study of the sanctuary of Apollo on the Acropolis of Athens.  He serves on the board of directors of the Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project, where he is also an instructor, diver and primary investigator. In his talk, he will unpack how a colonial misunderstanding of Plato’s Atlantis parable has fueled division and harmed humanity.

Manini Banerjee 

Student, BFA 2023 Industrial Design

Manini is a nature and human-centric designer born and brought up in Singapore. Her design practice focuses on integrated robotic design and seeks the commingling of digital and tactile biological media. She imagines a world where technology is more compatible with human life and follows the laws of natural selection. In her talk, Manini will discuss how she strives to find a further symbiosis between genuine and artificial life through bio-hybrid sculptural and robotic research.

Nellie Geraghty

Student, MFA 2024 Illustration

Nellie Geraghty is an interdisciplinary artist who uses her experience as a farm hand to fuel her creative work. She enjoys ridiculously long walks, laughing until her face hurts, getting up before sunrise and listening to other people’s stories. Currently Nellie is investigating scientific illustration, cyanotype, and silkscreening in the hope that these mediums will  strengthen her artistic practice. In her talk Nellie  will disentangle her own life story and discuss how it has brought her to where she stands today.