Robert Leyen

As a visual artist and designer, Robert loves working with rhythm and modules, contemporary takes on traditional ideas and forms and spatial efficiency.

Robert considers how to use design to encourage human interaction and community, knitting together the urban fabric and revitalizing neglected spaces to create neighborhoods and vibrant places where people will want to gather. A licensed Massachusetts teacher in Visual Arts (ages 5-12) and Design and Visual Communications (ages 9-14), he is currently on the Design and Visual Communications Advisory Committee for the Boston Arts Academy, designing and implementing a new career and technical program for Design and Visual Communications.

  • I grew up  in Austin, TX, went to undergrad in Tucson, AZ, and have been in the Boston area ever since.

  • My education  B.Arch (5-year professional degree), University of Arizona; Teaching Certificate, Massachusetts College of Art and Design

  • My earliest design memory  Growing up, I loved to rearrange the furniture in my room every couple of months to keep things interesting.

  • I’m drawn to design because  it's a process of learning and thinking through making. I like the messy process of exploring a bunch of ideas, getting feedback, synthesizing different wants/needs and then refining things and making them better.

  • Places that have affected me are  Star Pass in the Tucson Mountains, Canyon de Chelly, Chaco Canyon, Medicine Bow Peak in Wyoming, Vedauwoo, and Yellowstone. Being out in the wilderness is important for resetting the mind and sparking creative thought.

  • Favorite place in Inman Square  1369 Coffee House

  • When I’m not working you can find me  at home, probably crafting something or exploring new artistic techniques.

  • Ballpoint or felt tip?  Felt is best — it provides more control over line quality and feels better gliding over paper.

  • The best piece of advice I've ever been given  It's not about doing the extraordinary, it's about doing the ordinary extraordinarily well.