Payson R. Stevens has had two parallel tracks in his professional career: one in the field of science/science communication; the other in art and design. He was President and Creative Director of InterNetwork, Inc. (INI/1979-99) and InterNetwork Media Inc. (1993-2004), both award-winning science/consulting groups with clients in government, industry, and academia. Originally trained in molecular biology at the City University of New York and in biological oceanography at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Stevens also studied at the Arts Students League and the School of Visual Arts in New York City. He has been involved with traditional and new media as an artist, designer, writer, and filmmaker for almost 50 years. Work can be seen on www.energylandscapes.com
Stevens was lead author of Embracing Earth: New Views of Our Changing Planet (Chronicle Books, 1992), which appeared in four foreign-language editions. He was also contributing author and artist/designer to the award-winning college textbooks, Geology Today (CRM, 1973) and Biology Today (CRM, 1971). His film credits include a CINE Golden Eagle Award (1980) for a national PBS broadcast script on Antarctica. From 1981 to 1998, Stevens’ companies helped develop a series of sponsored Earth-science reports, brochures, posters, and multimedia projects for the major US science agencies (e.g., NASA, NOAA, USGS) on global change issues. These won top awards for writing and design in annual competitions. Stevens helped pioneer the field of interactive multimedia starting in 1986. He produced and directed ten acclaimed educational CD-ROM titles on Earth science and environmental subjects, two of which debuted at the Smithsonian Institution’s 1995 Ocean Planet Exhibition. In 1994, InterNetwork received the Presidential Design Award for Excellence from Bill Clinton for the CD-ROM science-journal prototype, Arctic Data InterActive. And in 1993, INI received the prestigious US Geological Survey John Wesley Powell Award for furthering earth science awareness. Stevens is also an accomplished public speaker having presented at numerous high-profile conferences on the environment, technology, and design (TED, CNN, Apple, etc.)
From 2000-14, he advised on environmental, sustainable livelihood, and ecotourism issues for the Great Himalayan National Park and spearheaded its successful UNESCO Inscription as a World Heritage Site (June 2014) through Friends of GHNP (co-founded in 2000, www.greathimalayannationalpark.com). Stevens was a founding member and Board Advisor of My Himachal, a US non-profit from 2006-11. Since 2000 he has worked, on the ground, guiding projects dedicated to improving rural Himachal Pradesh villager’s lives and protecting the environment. His work received Project Concern International’s Hands Across the Border Award in 2008 and 2010.
Concomitant with his science/communication work, Stevens continues to do fine art in traditional, digital video, and computer-generated formats since 1970. From 1966-68 he was a member of the acclaimed Bread & Puppet street theater group (New York City). Electrographic art was in group shows in the 1970s and artbooks. Computer art was featured as poster for SIGGRAPH 83 Art Show and is found in corporate and private collections. Work focuses on energy flow in the natural world, resulting from extensive time in Nature, including California mountains and deserts, Baja Mexico, the Southwest, Alaska, Antarctica, and the Indian Himalayas (trekking over 1,500 km in GHNP).
Artwork is abstract/semi-abstract and also reflects visualizing aspects of his meditative practice. Subject matter of works on paper is figurative and representational. Indian solo exhibits include American Center/US Embassy, New Delhi (2009), Government Museum, Chandigarh, (2007), and the Nicholas Roerich Museum Gallery, Naggar (2006). A 35-year retrospective of artwork and science communications was held at Southwestern College Art Gallery (San Diego, 2010). His recent experimental videos (on two DVDs) VideoTonePoems™: Suite I-2014 and Suite II-2016, have screened at US and international film festivals (2015-16) and are based on his poetry, You in the World (2010) and The World in You (2015), all available on amazon.com.
Stevens divides his time painting/writing/filmmaking in studios in Del Mar, California and the remote Kullu Valley, Indian Himalayas where he lives with his wife, the writer/ playwright/ poet, Kamla K. Kapur (www.kamlakkapur.com).
. VideoTonePoems Suite III – 2017.
. VideoTonePoems Suite II – 2016.
. The World in You – 2015.
. VideoTonePoems Suite I – 2014.
. You In The World – 2010.
. Meshuggenary: Celebrating the World of Yiddish (Simon & Shuster, 2002)
. Embracing Earth: New Views of Our Changing Planet (Chronicle Books, 1992)
. Biology Today (CRM Books, 1972)