J.D. Talasek

Director,  Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences

alasek_1JD Talasek is the director of Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences (2101 Constitution Ave, NW, Washington DC), a program that is focused on the exploration of intersections between science, medicine, technology, and visual culture (www.cpnas.org).  He also heads the academies’ African American History Program (AAHP) that seeks to raise the awareness of contributions made by African Americans to areas of science, medicine and engineering (www.africanamericanhistoryprogram.org ).  He was the creator and organizer of the international online symposium on Visual Culture and Bioscience (www.visualcultureandbioscience.org) and co-editor of the published transcripts (distributed by D.A.P., March 2009).  The second in this series of online symposia on Visual Culture and Evolution was held from April 5 through April 14, 2010 (www.VCandE.org).


Talasek holds an MFA in studio arts from the University of Delaware, an MA in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester, and BS in Photography from East Texas State University.  He has taught photography at the University of Delaware as well Essex and Howard Community Colleges and is currently on the faculty at Johns Hopkins University in the Museum Studies Masters Program. He has curated several exhibitions at the National Academy of Sciences including Visionary Anatomies (toured through the Smithsonian Institution, 2004 – 2006), Absorption + Transmission: work by Mike and Doug Starn, The Tao of Physics: Photographs by Arthur Tress, Cycloids: Paintings by Michael Schultheis.  At the University of Delaware, he organized and curated Observations in an Occupied Wilderness: Photographs by Terry Falke and LightBox: the Visual AIDS Archive Project.


Talasek is also the art advisor for Issues in Science and Technology Magazine published by the University of Texas at Dallas and The National Academies.  He is a member of: the College Art Association; Society of Photographic Educators; the Society for Literature, Science and Art; and the American Association of Museums.