About me and about this website

I have a background in biological science, science communication, and art.  These all link for me to ideas of knowledge and the unknown, truth and metaphor, improvisation and rigour, decision making and creative flow, intention and interpretation, cultural context and personal beliefs, the individual and the collective, questioning and trust.  They are all, importantly, fields of practice, where the occasional expressions that arise that we call papers, essays, art works, or events are manifestations of practice: useful as milestones and as objects that can be shared, but only partial and of the moment, and do not define the practice.  

This site is an attempt to draw my manifestations together in a way that makes sense to me, and encourages me to do new work and document it. It also allows people to visit, and could be the starting point of a conversation, I'm hoping I can also collect here some links to other people's work and ideas that resonate or might act as stimuli for my thoughts, in a way that feels useful for me.

The art and the writing reproduced here have been produced sporadically over several years, as assignments, as experiments, occasionally as commissions, sometimes for the love of it or because I feel a need to do it. So there is no overall plan. With both writing and art, one purpose is exploration: I end up in unexpected places, I find things are not as they seemed, and I am changed through reflection. 

One advantage of having stepped away from the obsessively intense and narrow focus of active scientific research, is being able to look at science more broadly, and from a height that gives a different perspective.  I'm interested in how I and others engage with the outputs and culture of the scientific world, how both experts and non-experts interpret the results of science, and how the new discipline of Public Engagement, which is supposed to foster these interactions, develops. 

I have no expectations of how might use this site, or what you take from it.  My training and instinct lead me towards under- rather than over-explaining, and allow you to make of it what you will. We all have to draw a line somewhere.

If you would like to ask a question or connect, email me at stoker.neil AT gmail.com.

My Background: