Goodyear died in Branford on Jan. 20, 2014 after a brief illness. The daughter of Dr. Stephen Goodyear and
Mary Robins Goodyear, she was born in Carmel, California and moved shortly
thereafter to Englewood for two years and then spent the rest of her
childhood in Darien.
She graduated from Milton Academy, after which she studied at the American College in Paris. She received her B.A. in Architecture from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn in 1980. Also in 1980, she attended the Wright Ingraham Institute in Colorado Springs, CO. She lived in Branford and New York City.
career centered on the arts. She was part of the The Ocarina Orchestra which
was filmed at the Whitney Museum of Art, New York and the Museum of Modern Art,
New York and broadcast on WNEW News. Her
main focus was fine arts, for which she won many awards, including the Cine
Golden Eagle and Peabody Award among others.
Much of her artistic output centered on drawings, including two series
of detailed realistic drawings documenting important landmark buildings in
Lower Manhattan (where she maintained a studio for 22 years), which were shown
in a solo exhibit at India House.
series of drawings, she also documented archeological sites visited during the
course of her research for her manuscript, The
Serpent that Shakes the Earth. Jessica’s art was often characterized by
intellectually complex long-term projects.
One of these projects conceptualized vast geographic expanses such as
the Earth and the United States, using folk media such as embroidery in
combination with advanced maps. One of
the underlying themes of her work is the fusion of art and science.
At her death, she was working on an
installation entitled "Illustrious Ancestors" that traced her
ancestry back to the founder and first president of the MOMA, major American
inventors, founders of the American colonies, the Mayflower, and to her English
and Dutch forebearers going back 500 years.
Her art was included in publications, including Site Matters: the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council's World Trade Center Artists Residency, 1997-2001, and Visioning Life Systems: Artists' Work from their Permacultural Source. This year, her work was exhibited at the John Slade Ely House in New Haven.
was a pioneer in the emerging field of cultural geology. She began using the phrase "cultural
geology" in the early 1980s to describe a new holistic anthropologic
approach to the relationship between culture and tectonics.
She lectured and wrote extensively on the subject, as well as produced a series of drawings of archaeological sites and other artworks including a short video related to her work.
also had a life-long interest in architecture, demonstrated in films such as
"Three Generations of Avant Garde Japanese Architects" (PBS 1988),
"Great Houses of the Hudson River," (1987) and "Building
Green" (National Audubon 1993), which she respectively edited and
She edited for museums such as the Ford Museum of Dearborn, Michigan (1987) and the Storm King Art Center,
in Storm King, New York ("Three Sculptors" 1990), as well as,
educational programs such as "Behind the Scenes" (art education for
children, PBS 1992) and "Geography in American History," a series for
American high school students (1991).
She delved into the topic of people undergoing stressful situations in "The Nature of Stress" (PBS 1989), "Rights of Passage," (UNICEF 1994), "Faces of Hate" (Southern Poverty Law Center 1993), and "The Iran Hostage Crisis" (CBS cable 1998). She was also an instructor at the School of Visual Arts in New York City.
Jessica leaves behind her sister, Abigail and brother, Talbot, two nieces and four nephews. Her brother, Zachary, of Washington, CT and Wallingford, CT, predeceased her in November. A celebration of her life is being planned for the spring. Memorial donations may be made to the American Anthropological Association.Editor's note: This obituary, without the links and in slightly different form, originally was posted on Branford Patch.