Dear Human originated from the mutual desire to create joy through unexpected moments in everyday environments. Though it began as an urban intervention practice, this desire has carried through as we’ve continued to explore new materials and forms, drifting from fine art into design concepts and back again.
The result is a collection that resides somewhere between the two disciplines.
Since our beginning, we have been dedicated to thoughtful material use, and projects often begin with playful experimentation with industrial castoffs and scrap materials to see where they can go. Our works are designed and made in our Montreal studio.
Jasna Sokolovic and Noel O’Connell
Before meeting at an artist residency in Denmark in 2008, Jasna and Noel lived varied lives in other worlds. Jasna grew up in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. When war broke out in the 1990s, her studies in architecture were interrupted and led to her immigration to Canada. There, she took the opportunity to change course and studied fine arts, graduating from Emily Carr University in Vancouver.
Noel left his native United States after university to study in Thailand and China, where he immersed himself in Asian cultures and became fluent in Thai and Mandarin. After several years, he returned to the U.S. to complete his MFA at Rhode Island School of Design, with a focus in ceramics and sculpture.
While working on their individual fine art practices, Noel and Jasna began experimenting together on collaborative urban-interventions, public art, and design-oriented projects. As their collaborative work gained momentum, it quickly became their primary focus and Dear Human was born.
2018 INVITED RESIDENT DESIGNERS, Design Week Mexico,
Vision & Tradition with Tributo, Patzcuaro, Michoacan, Mexico
2013 SELF-DIRECTED RESEARCH
History of Exterior Portuguese Tiles and Making, Lisbon, Portugal
2011 INVITED RESIDENT ARTISTS, MEDALTA, Medicine Hat Alberta
2010 RESIDENT ARTISTS, LA CEIBA GRÁFICA, Veracruz, Mexico
2009 RESIDENT ARTISTS, BANFF CENTRE, Banff, Alberta, Canada
2008 RESIDENT ARTISTS, GULDAGERGÅRD
International Ceramic Research Center, Skælskør, Denmark