J. David Carlson is a native southern Californian who was born in 1975. He has an MA in Ceramics from California State University of Fullerton and an MFA in Visual Art from Vermont College of Fine Art.  Carlson is currently on faculty and Chair of the Department of Art & Design at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego California.   In total, he has taught in higher education for over 15 years. In 2010 Carlson had a major solo exhibition at the Laurence Asher Gallery in downtown Los Angeles.  In addition, Carlson has participated in numerous group exhibitions and had artwork acquired by the permanent collections of the National Museum of Play in Rochester NY and the MAKK Museum of Art in Vienna Austria.  Carlson founded in 2013 Circustank, a designer art toy company. 






The act play has been a major influence in my research of art practice.  This research has led me to reflect on the significant role toys have had on my life and the potential role toys have in the artwork I create.   


I find inspiration in the history and narrative that toys play in our culture, serving as symbols that mark moments in youth and culture. 


I see the artwork I make as an homage to both to my childhood (where my imagination ran free) and to my adulthood (where the fusion of imagination, craft, and new narratives flourish).


I hope my work provides an opportunity to experience the playful enchantment of one's own sacred playground.

Photo by: Eric Minh Swenson | EMS Arts | 2014                                                                               ©Copyright 2016 |