IASAS Board

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Sean A. Day    

IASAS President

Sean A. Day was born in Jackson, Michigan. He began college at Indiana University, majoring in Music Composition, but eventually switched to Anthropology at Purdue University. He holds an M.A. in Anthropology from the University of Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. in Linguistics from Purdue University. He founded the Synesthesia List, an international forum for synesthetes and synesthesia researchers, in 1992, while doing research towards his dissertation on synesthetic metaphors. After receiving his doctorate in 1995, Day taught Linguistics at Purdue University for two years. In 1997, he took an Associate Professor position at National Central University, in Chungli, Taiwan, where he taught English and Linguistics until 2001; during this time, he continued to maintain the Synesthesia List from Taiwan. In 2001, he moved back to the United States, taking a Visiting Professor position teaching Linguistics at Miami University, in Oxford, Ohio. In 2003, he took a position on the faculty of Trident Technical College, in Charleston, SC, where he now teaches anthropology. Dr. Day was instrumental in developing the American Synesthesia Association into a nonprofit organization, assisted in organizing ASA conferences, and served as the ASA President from 2000 to 2016. He has also served as the International Coordinator for the Artecittà Foundation since 2009. A multiple synesthete himself, he has given talks about synesthesia in numerous different forums around the world, including in Taiwan, Russia, and Spain, and has been featured in documentaries on synesthesia presented in such countries as Australia, Ecuador, Japan, the Netherlands, and the UK, as well as in the US and Canada. His current research interests include music-related synesthesia, rare forms of synesthesia, and “synesthete ethnography” and demographics. 

 

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James Wannerton

IASAS Vice President

James Wannerton was born in Manchester, UK and presently lives in Stuttgart, Southern Germany. One of the first individuals in the UK to have his synaesthetic experiences studied and documented, James has been the subject of more than 100 published research papers and general interest articles on the subject of synaesthesia and perception, world- wide. He has presented at numerous international neurology and synaesthesia conferences and regularly gives talks and presentations at schools, colleges, National Health Service facilities and other public venues. James has also been featured in a number of TV and radio documentaries, primarily for the BBC but also for ITV, Channels 4 & 5, ABC, CBS, NBC and the Discovery Channel for items broadcast across Europe, Asia, South Africa, Australia and the United States. As President of the UK Synaesthesia Association for the last 10 years, he has been committed to raising the profile and general awareness of synaesthesia via media strands and art/science projects/collaborations. His role at UKSA also includes the organisation of regular International synaesthesia conferences. He has recorded educational videos on the subject of synaesthesia for the Equality & Human Rights Commission and the Wellcome Trust and was also instrumental in the organisation and setting up of the NHS Choices synaesthesia link on the National Health Service web site which now pipes reliable, accurate and up to date information on synaesthesia into every GP surgery in the United Kingdom. James Wannerton’s most recent endeavours include an award winning “Synaesthesia Garden” exhibited at the 2015 Royal Hampton Court Palace Flower Show and an interactive sound/vision to taste synaesthesia exhibition at the Victoria and Albert museum which aimed to recreate the taste synaesthesia experience within a gallery setting. He has also exhibited at art exhibitions in Canterbury and France. James is an active partner int the “Synaesthesia Symposium”, a trust set up to promote awareness of mirror-touch synaesthesia. He is also a founding member of “Tubespirations”, a group of artists, creative thinkers, and motivational speakers who promote creative thinking using the London Underground tube system for inspiration.

 

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Michael Rinaldi

IASAS Treasurer

Michael Rinaldi is a working computational physicist and synesthete. He received a BA and MA in Physics from San Francisco State University and has worked in the field of space sciences for 31 years. He spent most of his career with Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center in Palo Alto, California, where he focused on characterizing various aspects of the near Earth environment as well as Sun-Earth connection processes. Over the years he and his colleagues designed and built various satellite experiments for NASA and NOAA. As a computational physicist, Michael Rinaldi focused most of his career on analyzing data and building physical mathematical models from and for experiments. Recently, he has been consulting with an international team for the ESA Rosetta comet mission. Michael Rinaldi has a general interest in all fields of science. He is a mild synesthete and he finds the neurological aspects of synesthesia fascinating. 

 

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Carolyn “CC” Hart

IASAS Secretary

CC Hart is a writer, blogger and synesthete. She studied comparative literature at the University of California , Berkeley, and holds a BA in Management from St. Mary’s College focused on nonprofit organizations, as well as an MFA in Writing from the University of San Francisco. Her essays about her experiences with mirror-touch synaesthesia have been published in Qualia Journal and on the neuroscience website braindecoder.com. Additionally, she blogs about synaesthetic perception at voxsynaesthetica.com. CC Hart has worked for more that 20 years in corrective soft tissue therapy, where mirror-touch synaesthesia, mirror-proprioception and synesthesia-for-pain have informed her work. She recently presented on the topic of mirror-sensory synaesthesias in the practice of manual therapy at the 2016 United Kingdom Synaesthesia Association annual conference. She makes her home in San Francisco, California.

 

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Kevin Mitchell

IASAS Board Member

Kevin Mitchell is an Associate Professor in the Smurfit Institute of Genetics at Trinity College Dublin, and a member of the Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience. His interests are in understanding the genetic program specifying the wiring of the brain and its relevance to variation in human faculties, especially to psychiatric and neurological disease. He is particularly interested in schizophrenia, autism and synaesthesia. He is a graduate of the Genetics Department, Trinity College Dublin (B.A., Mod. 1991) and received his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley (1997), where he studied nervous system development with Prof. Corey Goodman. He did postdoctoral research with Prof. Marc Tessier-Lavigne at Stanford University, using molecular genetics to study neural development in the mouse. Since 2002 he has been on the faculty at Trinity College Dublin as a Science Foundation Ireland Investigator. He was an EMBO Young Investigator and was elected to Fellowship of Trinity College in 2009. He is editor of a new book on “The Genetics of Neurodevelopmental Disorders” (Wiley), and author of an upcoming popular science book “Born That Way” (Princeton University Press, 2017). Kevin Mitchell is also active on Twitter; you can find him via his Twitter handle @WiringtheBrain. He also writes a popular blog on genetics and neuroscience, Wiring the Brain.

                   

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Anton V. Sidoroff-Dorso

IASAS Board Member

Anton V. Sidoroff-Dorso, is a Moscow-based linguist and psychologist. He received a full specialist degree in linguistics and language acquisition, and studied for a post-graduation degree (Candidate of Sciences) in psychology at Moscow Pedagogical State University, with a dissertation on individual differences in people with synaesthesia. His research focuses on general psychological and neurocognitive aspects of synaesthesia, synaesthetic mechanisms as viewed in the frameworks of cultural-historical psychology and cognitive anthropology. Additionally, he is the co-editor of the Leonardo Bibliography list: Synaesthesia in Art and Science of the interdisciplinary journal Leonardo (MIT). Anton V. Sidoroff-Dorso has served on the board of the Artecittà Foundation as its International Coordinator since 2012, and is a member of the editorial board of the international Synesthesia Journal (Artecitta). He also founded the Russian Synaesthesia Community and monitors its web-resource synaesthesia.ru. and initiated and manages the data-base of Russian-speaking synaesthetes (now approx. 800 people). Anton V. Sidoroff-Dorso translated and adapted the Russian-language version of the worldwide multilingual online synaesthesia test of the Eagleman Lab (Baylor College of Medicine) and the Consistency Test of Synaesthesia (MatLab Syntools). He is also a co-author of “Ananthropology of synaesthesia”, author and developer of Synaesthesia Quotient and a related multi-scale test battery. Additionally he assisted and participated as key speaker in the production of science documentaries on the senses and synaesthesia.

 

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Christine Söffing

IASAS Board Member

Christine Söffing was born in Dortmund, Germany. From 1983 to 1993 she studied the history of art, German language and literature, computer science, psychology and art in Münster, Germany. Since 1992 she has committed to working as an artist, while also giving workshops for drawing, painting, sculpture and video for children, young people and adults. From 1996 to 2001, Christine Söffing served as the head of the art and music departments at the adult education center in Augsburg, Germany. In 2002 she founded and lead “Synaesthesiewerkstatt”, giving and organizing workshops, lectures, experimental music and trainings for creativity: www.synaesthesiewerkstatt.de From 2009 through February, 2016 she was the second head of “Deutsche Synästhesie-Gesellschaft: www.synaesthesie.org Since 2010, Christine Söffing has served as head of the EMU-Ensemble, which offers experimental music and art through the Musisches Zentrum Ulm University concerts and sound-installations uniting art and science: www.emu-ensemble.de  In 2012, she organized the conference “Synaesthesia with Children, Creativity and Learning” at Ulm University: www.uni-ulm/synaesthesia. Currently, Christine Söffing lives and works in Neu-Ulm, Germany where she creates exhibitions, sound-installations, film and concerts focused on experimental music.