Jonathan Harris is a visual artist, known for his work with data and storytelling. Combining elements of computer science, cartography, anthropology, photography, and ritual, his artworks explore the mysteries of life — especially the ways that humans are transforming reality through different kinds of technology.
He studied painting (with Tim Engelland) at Deerfield Academy, and then studied computer science (with Brian Kernighan) and photography (with Emmet Gowin) at Princeton University, before spending a year in Italy to study interaction design (with Andy Cameron) at Benetton‘s Fabrica. In 1999, inspired by the diaries of Peter Beard, he started keeping elaborate sketchbooks, filled with watercolor paintings, plants, insects, clippings, and other marginalia. In 2003, he was robbed at gunpoint and abandoned this practice, adopting computer code as his primary medium instead.
His work is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art (New York) and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. It has also been exhibited at The Barbican Centre (London), The Victoria & Albert Museum (London), Le Centre Pompidou (Paris), The CCCB (Barcelona), the Garage Museum for Contemporary Art (Moscow), the CAFA Art Museum (Beijing), and the Pace Gallery (New York). He has lectured all over the world, including at the TED Conference, PopTech, EG, AIGA, PSFK, Creative Mornings, The Aspen Ideas Festival, Google, Kodak, Converse, Hallmark, Proctor & Gamble, The GAP, The New York Times, and at universities such as Stanford, Princeton, Yale, Columbia, Pratt, Parsons, and RISD.
The winner of three Webby Awards, his work has also been recognized by AIGA, Ars Electronica, and the state of Vermont, for which he co-designed the official state quarter.