By Joey Lee
NYC Subway // March 2018 // https://chrispie.com/
My name is Joey Lee and I’m a Third Culture Kid (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_culture_kid). Throughout my life I’ve developed personally between cultures — as a Korean-American/foreigner — and unsurprisingly and professionally between disciplines — as a designer and researcher. Despite the never ending existential questions, I’ve found that I’m happiest in the mash-up between these spaces I’ve been occupying. It’s perhaps why I found a home somewhere in between geography and design/new media.
Geography has more to do with articulating the right questions
about the world, rather than having the answers to those questions
By training, some might consider me to be a capital “G” Geographer — I studied geography at UCLA (B.A.) and UBC (M.Sc), worked on developing new ways of mapping Greenhouse Gas Emissions in cities (with Dr. Andreas Christen), and gained a deep appreciation for critical perspectives (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_geography) and a strong foundation in spatial thinking. Through my experiences in Geography, I learned to consider everything, to ask more and better questions, and to be thoughtful about the ways my work (and the work of others) affects people and places. For me, Geography has more to do with articulating the right questions about the world, rather than having the answers to those questions. While as a geographer I might not have the answer to all of the world’s pressing questions, at least I will have (hopefully) unpacked more thoughtfully than most, where, how, and why those questions are being expressed. After all, you can’t solve a problem if you don’t know what the problem is in the first place. All that being said, the lens of geography is critical for what I do, but it’s fitting to say that I’m not “doing geography”.
From what I’m seeing, expressing new and critical perspectives
from the arts, humanities, and social sciences about/using
technology is what the world could use more of.