Stephen Wilson, the head of Conceptual Information Arts and Professor of Art at San Francisco State University from 1980 on, died on January 10, 2011 from cancer.

Steve was an inspired teacher, prodigious researcher, writer, scholar and artist, whose work pushed boundaries and built new bridges among the disciplines of art, science and technology.

Dedicated to defining new roles for artists in a rapidly changing world, Steve was the author of numerous books and essays. His most recent publication, Art + Science Now!, was published in the Fall, 2010 by Thames and Hudson.

Steve left a lasting legacy within the department, the university and the larger international community.

We would welcome your comments here.


  1. I had the honor of working with Steve on his book, ART + SCIENCE NOW! Through working with him on this project I was in contact with many of the amazing people from Steve's life. I am grateful to have been involved. Steve was a great thinker, artist, and educator. He will be missed.

  2. Amber Lee3/07/2012

    Steve is a wonderful teacher who inspired his students to imagine and pursue art that can bridge science and technology to the public in a way that is accessible and engaging for them. Working with him in 2010 for Energy Harvesting as a Public Art in UC Berkeley helped me push myself to pursue greater heights as an artist and collaborator. Thank You Steve.

  3. This is a wonderful exhibit and a wonderful tribute to Steve. It touches upon many aspects of his work and his research and art interests. Thank you to the curators who put it together. We all miss you, Steve! I miss you. You were a good friend, teacher, thinker. Some of your humor is also captured here, and I think that was very special.

    I became a PhD last March 2011, just a few months after Steve died. We had in common travelling to Australia. He was one artist I knew who had gone there, been there, done work there and my degree is from there. Steve was my advisor on this project and was a huge help to me. He understood the problems of writers, and steered me in great, current, dignified directions.

  4. Anonymous12/29/2012

    Whoa, I just discovered that Steve had passed just a minute ago.

    I graduated from the CIA department in 2000 and while I don't practice art on a professional level anymore, I will always appreciate the support and instruction of Steve Wilson (and Paula Levine as well) when I was at SFSU.

    Prior to my decision to concentrate on CIA, I was unhappy with my experience at SFSU. I felt like an outsider. For once in a long time, I felt I really belonged once I stepped foot into the CIA department.

    During my final year, I would start my retail work in the wee hours of the morning in order to get to Steve's class by 8. I am grateful he didn't flunk me for falling asleep in his class so often. Once we went to check out the AIDS quilt and while they turned off the lights to present a video, I started snoring quite loudly.

    In the year following my graduation, the promise of a great career in digital art faded away with the first dot com crash. I worked in computer games and 3D graphics for a few years and changed careers towards IT so all those hours in the Mac lab did help me.

    For some odd reason, I just decided to Google "CIA SFSU" tonight and it has lead me to this sad news. Steve Wilson was a kind and enlightening instructor.