Donna Fasano (1972, Chicago, United States) is an artisan working in a variety of media, primarily wood, leather, fabric and paper. By focusing on techniques and materials, Fasano considers the interplay between art and craft which is executed with modern tools such as laser engraving combined with traditional materials and finishes.
Designs emphasize extensive research into source materials such as such as the heliocentric solar system engraving in Tycho Brahe's 'De mundi atherei recentioribus phænomenis', counterpointing straightforward function with a whimsical wit, extending an invitation for one to play with the objects.
Her works are notable for their precision and tactile nature, presenting modern craftsmanship to be integrated with humor and intelligence and designed for play within one's daily life.
Donna Fasano currently lives and works in the Santa Fe Art District of Denver, Colorado.
My family's heritage is composed of engineers, designers, tinkerers, fabricators, lovers of lore and literature & one known luthier . We have been solving puzzles of mind & material for over 500 years, which may have had some hand in my choosing to pursue a degree in Scenography from the University of Kansas.
I've lived, worked, cooked, laughed, explored and devoted myself to adapting my theatre design craft to my surroundings in three countries outside of the United States. While stateside, I evolved through different applications of design and fabrication, ultimately choosing to use a laser engraver to combine modern precision with traditional craftsmanship.
As a devotee of pencil to paper to prototype to product, my process typically involves extensive research into source materials in order to develop original designs which I then integrate into playful objects.
My 40 watt Epilog laser engraver is the power tool of the 21st century, but it requires a knowledge of materials & fabrication that comes from my traditional craftsman background. Experimentation & play are part of my process, as well as collaborating with other designers & craftsmen to create new works outside of what I offer in my Shop
Original designs which reference and directly cite science, literature, & geek culture comes with the prerequisite to delve into the original source material for accuracy. I'll create or adapt vector graphics to be suitable for laser engraving (such as the heliocentric solar system engraving in Tycho Brahe's 'De mundi atherei recentioribus phænomenis').
Research into original source material is a glorious scavenger hunt, revealing more enticing tidbits than those which appear here & providing the inspiration for future designs.You will often find links to to some of the inspiration and research that went into the creations listed in my Shop . For fellow process nerds, I share much of the design and fabrication progress via Instagram, Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest.
FIELD TRIPS- Be curious! Investiga! Fridays are my day to cook up some randomness and follow where curiosity leads. Small moments outside the shop can lead to weird and wonderful inspiration. I post pictures & follow up research for #FieldTripFriday on my social media sites and my blog. Sometimes I'll open up the field trip to whomever wants to join in. Keep it curious, folks! Follow me @donnadiddit
Densely organized within 260 square feet of design & production space you'll find a reference material library, art, a 40 watt Epilog laser, command center (AKA laptop), a brindle greyhound, packing station, finishing station, & my coffee mug. I occasionally augment the square footage by going en pleine air, setting up a couple of sawhorses linteled with a slab of something broad & flat. Studio tours available upon request.
Monday-Friday 9am - 5pm
Saturday-Sunday by app't
I Support the Following Through Volunteering & Donation
In return, these feed my curiosity and engage me with a community composed of subtle and grand marvels.
I encourage you to be curious, as well.
ACLU The American Civil Liberties Union - Member Supporter. ACLU was founded to ensure the promise of the Bill of Rights and to expand its reach to people historically denied its protections. Providing legal counsel and lobbying for civil rights, you can find an ACLU branch in all 50 states.
Denver Public Library Friends Foundation - Member Supporter. DPLFF is the charitable organization responsible for providing additional funding to the Denver Public Library system programs. Nearly all public libraries have a Friends Foundation which helps to provide support and volunteers for the public library. Access to information should be made as accessible as possible to the widest number of people .
The Long Now Foundation- Member Supporter. Co-Founders Brian Eno and Stewart Brand created an organization to foster long-term thinking. Oh, and build a 10,000 year clock inside a mountain. Whenever I visit San Francisco, you can be sure to find me at The Interval (or the Exploritorium).
AIGA- Member, Speaker, Volunteer. Design geekiness is embraced with my fellow designers. So while I am not a graphic artist by training, I sort of flumphed! into this world and found great cohorts. I've also shared my experiences as a laser engraver/designer. You can check that out HERE.
OpenAir, Colorado Public Radio- Member Supporter. Fine, fine, I'll donate! But only because you've bumped KCRW off my streaming audio and replaced it with your amazing indie and local music programming. I heart Loki!
Brain Pickings- Maria Popova. -Donor. I do a lot of research for my word games, but this woman pours her life into finding and highlighting some of the world's great writers into an astonishing newsletter and daily blog.
TEDx MileHigh- Volunteer. I used to just watch TED Talks from my computer, "arm chair inspiration" but volunteering brought me the part I love the most- supporting the event days and getting a chance to see the talks live.
CultureHaus, Denver Art Museum- Volunteer. Young professionals engaged in the arts as patrons?! I love this!
Denver Design Council, Denver Art Museum- Volunteer. Supporting the DAM's architecture, design and graphics collection, my personal design geek is always inspired and fulfilled through their programming.
Smithsonian Digital Volunteers: Transcription Center- Volunteer. All of the word games I create are rigorously researched and sources cited. Some of those sources such as a 1608 Shakespeare folio are only possible because of digital libraries. The Smithsonian Digital Volunteers help to transcribe and verify transcriptions of some of the museum's collections for digital use. +15 Geek XP
NASA Social- Alum. NASA Socials are open to anyone over the age of 18 (although there is the potential for under 18) with social media presence. I've been able to meet the scientists, engineers and techs who are responsible for the Mars MAVEN satellite (September 2014) and OSIRIS-REx asteroid sampling spacecraft (April 2016). As a result, my deep geek for space and science has been shared across the years. I encourage you to apply for an event!