My name is John Germain and I teach grade 9 painting and drawing at DASH. This is my 5th year of teaching at the best school in the entire universe. I became certified to teach in the Miami-Dade Public School System in 1998, and taught elementary/middle school art for 11 years before becoming a member of the DASH faculty. I had always known about DASH as being one of the top magnet schools in the nation and indeed, for a long time I had hoped to teach there one day.
My first year of teaching at DASH was very exciting, and each year only gets better for me. With high school students, I am finally able to introduce lessons and aim my instruction at a higher conceptual level than at my previous elementary/middle level, and I can now teach from my life experience as a working artist more freely. Teaching at DASH is demanding but very fulfilling work. I genuinely feel like I make a difference to my students, and they in turn enrich and energize my life without fail on a daily basis.
I was born and raised in Buffalo, NY, and attended Ithaca College and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. I lived in New York City in my formative years as a young artist (1977-1988), and later for 5 years in Los Angeles (1988-1993) before settling in Miami.
I come from a very close knit Italian-American family. My father was actually a fairly accomplished amateur painter who later became a doctor to support his family, so I guess you could say he passed down the “art gene” to me. Several family members are involved with the arts. One nephew is a screenwriter in Los Angeles, another a novelist in Colorado, my sister is a museum employee at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, and my niece is a professional photographer in Brooklyn. When they have visited me, I’ve made sure they learn all about DASH, and they are thrilled (and actually a little jealous) that I’m so fortunate to work in such a stimulating environment among such dedicated teachers and talented students.
Using anatomical references and mazes as metaphor, Germain’s work explores the relationship of individual psyche to Cosmos, ego self to Universal Self, human brain to Consciousness, personal soul to Spirit. Also on display will be the artist’s working journals, which he calls the “compost heap” for the gestation of ideas and visions in the development of the work.