SchoolArt + Design
M.F.A. Graphic Design Program Coordinator
Darren Baker is a Lecturer in studio art and graphic design in the School of Art+Design and the Chillicothe Campus. He received a BFA in Graphic Design and Photography at Shawnee State University in 2001 followed by a MFA in Graphic Design from Ohio University in 2012. He has been the coordinator of the Ohio University Chillicothe campus art program since 2013. He is currently the MFA in Graphic Design Area Coordinator. He serves on committees at the University, College and school levels together with graduate student committees and on Regional Higher Education campuses. He serves on the board of directors for the Ohio Designer Craftsman, The National Park Service, Friends of the Hopewell Mound City Group, and the Pike Heritage Museum.
He is former Director of Visual Arts at the Southern Ohio Museum and Cultural Center in Portsmouth, Ohio where he curated numerous permanent, solo and group exhibitions. Darren was also an exhibition and graphic designer with Hilferty and Associates contributing to a variety of museums such as the National Historic Trails Center in Casper, Wyoming, The Louis and Clarke State Historic Site in Hartford, Illinois, Weedon Island Preserve and Cultural Center in St. Petersburg, Florida and Center for Disease Control and Prevention Visitor and Education Center in Atlanta, Georgia.
He has received grants from the Ohio Arts Council, the Ohio Humanities Council, Midwest Arts Alliance, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for Humanities, Ohio Museum Association and Ohio University. Additionally, he received funding from the John and Betty Hogden Foundation to study art, architecture, design and poetry in England, France and Italy. His international work continued with a consultation with Basler Papiermühle in 2018 and is investigating letterpress printing in Botswana and South Africa in 2021.
Together with Don Adleta, he worked to build the new Don E Adleta Typeshop and Bindery in Seigfred Hall, a 900 square foot printshop dedicated to typography, letterpress and the handmade book. He is currently acting as manager and curator, actively collecting and expanding the collection of metal and wood type, press and other printing equipment.
His proposal for a museum focused on papermaking, letterpress printing and bookmaking is currently under-review as part of the Museum Complex at the Ridges in Athens, Ohio. He is also working with local donors and patrons to found The American Type Founders (ATF) Institute as a vital part of this proposal.
His work focuses on how we live in a time of translation, from analog objects to digital abstractions. He is mechanically driven and deeply rooted in physical processes. However, he is always looking for an opportunity to bring analog experiences and digital abstractions together to create something new.