Senior Product Manager, WalmartLabs & Walmart Brazil

Walmart BrazilCompany: WalmartLabs & Walmart Brazil | Locations: Sunnyvale, California, US & São Paulo, Brazil | Dates: 2015 to present

Highlights:

  • Global product owner for customer service tool launched in the Brazil market, serving as product owner for a scrum team of developers in Brazil.
  • Product management for payment, fraud and post-transactional systems as part of an end-to-end e-commerce platform that can be used for cross-border trade in international markets.
  • Guided collaboration strategies for internationally distributed development teams and stakeholders, split time between USA and Brazil office locations.
  • Certified Agile Product Owner, with experience in Scrum and Kanban frameworks.

View full Work History

Liberdade and Centro, São Paulo

From a tour of the São Paulo city center (mostly).

New Work @ Blomster Studio: Photos

From July 1 July 4, 2012, I showed recent work at Blomster Studios in Guerneville. The gallery was open on weekend afternoons and by appointment. Here are pictures from the show and some of the work.

The large piece, title Oak, was created specifically for the space. I painted the 8 x 16 foot painting over the course of four weeks. I’ve returned to the them of the Oak tree, and especially the branching of California’s valley oaks, several times in the past and have been interested in capturing the branching patterns in real scale.


New Work @ Studio Blomster

I showed new work at Studio Blomster in Guerneville during the month of  June, 2012

Opening Reception

Friday, June 1, 2012
5-7pm
14045D Armstrong Woods in Guerneville

Map

The gallery is open on weekend afternoons and will be open on July 4 and by appointment. Contact me for more info at 415.235.4821.

LACMA

I spent the weekend in Los Angeles a few weeks ago to see Jovanotti in concert at El Rey–an amazing concert that deserves its own post. With my spare time, I toured both the Getty Center and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, two museums I hadn’t visited before. It was a lot of art to cram into a day and a half but had some rewarding moments.

The expanse and care of the Getty exhibits are both phenomenal and the LACMA complex offered a great variety of art-related experience, including a celebration of Nowruz, the Iranian New Year, complete with dancers and a haft sin table of symbolic items representing the seven elements of life, which accounted for the unexpected assortment.

There was some contemporary art as well, including Chris Burden’s incredibly popular Metropolis II, which had crowds of families enthralled with it’s noisy excess. There was also a large gallery dedicated to the oversized works of Robert Therrien.  No Title (Blue Plastic Plates) is a ten-foot-tall mixed media work and I caught the gallery attendant in the background of the picture featured here. I showed her the image–she was amused and thanked me.

Cartography series

In 2007, I was visiting South Africa and participated in an art program that began with three weeks in cultural immersion in and around Cape Town, including hiking to see rock painting of the San people, touring the townships and Robbin Island and the visiting with contemporary local artists, followed by a week of studio time. Except for a small kit of supplies the participating artists brought from home, we were instructed to use materials at hand and work on themes that had emerged from our experiences.

While South Africa’s history has many parallels to the United States, the differences, including the legacy of apartheid, are astounding and sometimes difficult to process. But from a place where there has been so much recent violence and pain, there is inspiration in the natural beauty of the land and resilience of the people. In addition to the important cultural institutions we visited, the markets of Cape Town are filled with the art of many African peoples and I was struck how they embrace the use of recycled modern materials, transforming them by exploiting their aesthetic and constructive qualities.

When I decided to begin some drawings, cardboard seemed like a natural choice because of it’s abundance and practical beauty. I was also attracted to the idea of constructing a large work out of many small pieces and that I could then pack up and bring home. The series, which began with an image of an African wrestler in an abstracted map-based landscape, continues to evolve as I slowly refine the conceptual use of the cardboard. Each drawing visually links with the next, creating a progression of interconnected of images that has the potential to become a mural of enormous size that may never actually be presented in it’s entirety.

2011 Fall Open Studio @ ActivSpace

I’ll be participating in Artspan’s Open Studios. I’ll be showing my most recent work, including the works on this page, available for purchase or just for looking at.

Peter Howells Studio @ ActivSpace

Studio #532 (5th floor, NW corner)
3150 18th Street, San Francisco [Map]

The “Rearranged World” series

Rearranded World: The Seas 2I found printer trays from an old Chinese printing press in a junk shop in Sonoma County in 2006. Actually, the 15 trays were stacked in the grass in the back yard of the shop, next to discarded sinks and storm windows. I was intrigued by the both the mystery of their origins and the beauty of their weathered patina. They were hand-made in a fairly simple fashion with strips of wood nailed together with a press board backing. Between the strips of wood, pieces of sheet metal had been carefully cut and inserted, providing cubby holes for the lead type used in letterpress printing. Though only a few of the tiny leads remained, the labels representing each of the Chinese characters were still fixed to the surface of each tray.

For almost a year, the trays sat in my studio–I knew I wanted to do something with them but wasn’t sure what. I had recently begun working with mixed media and using and found images, but the trays represented a unique challenge because of their abstract quality. However I intervened, I didn’t want to overwhelm or hide the beauty of the trays and wanted to transform them in some way that was conceptually and aesthetically meaningful. I began by inserting tiny objects either found from nature or from my studio into the tiny slots, much as larger printer trays for English type are used as curio shadow boxes by hobbyists.

Concerned about the kitschy reference,  I thought about trying to make an arrangement of objects that could define a larger composition, using the holes as picture elements. I tried black and white drawing paper folded and fitted into the slots as “pixels.” Unhappy with the result, next I tried higher quality paper  that could be curled into the slots instead of folded, which created the illusion of tiny colorful discs. Pleased with the direction, I started slicing up old calendars featuring Van Gogh and Gaughin prints into tiny strips. While the use of the paper felt right, the resulting compositions of color-paper strips were either random, non-discript or contrived, consistently overwhelming the trays instead of complementing them.

I had recently been to the Friends of the San Francisco Library’s annual book sale, where I found a selection of incredible atlases for $1 and $2, each with maps that I was attracted to because of their distinctive visual language of lines, colors and typography to represent a particular view of the world. I found a beautiful map of the world’s sea floors from an old Reader’s Digest atlas. The maps in themselves had a strong visual quality with aquamarine blue for the oceans and tans, browns and oranges for the land. As I worked on the first work of what would become the Rearranged World series, I wanted to maintain the beauty of the maps even as I destroyed them. I  found the best way to keep the qualities that attracted me was to organize the strips by color and make simple compositions that could maximize the contrast between the areas, resulting in a minimalist composition of concentric rectangles, with blue in the center, surrounded by a white rectangle to clearly divide the aqua from another, larger tan rectangle.

Pleased with the results of the latest effort, I started another to complement. I didn’t want to merely repeat the same pattern and, as I filled the little slots with curls of paper, recognized that leaving some of the slots empty could also be used as a way of adding contrast and variety to the texture. In the end, I completed three pieces which now work as a set.

In 2008 I participated in an show at the Thoreau Center with an environmental theme called  “The Water Project” and included the three new works. As I struggled with the titles, I began to recognize some of the symbolic qualities of the works, as an expression of humanity’s rearranging of the world and how that impacts everything, including the seas, so I settled on the title Rearrange World: The Seas, with the idea that additional works in the same theme would follow.

I didn’t immediately complete the rest of the Rearranged World type tray pieces by using maps. I struggled to understand what made The Seas work while the earlier pieces using simple colored paper and snippets of calendars had not. It wasn’t the use of maps in particular or the composition of shapes but rather a combination of those elements along with the striking texture created by the curls of paper and the empty slots in relationship with the wood and tiny paper labels of the trays. What I enjoy the most about the works in this series is that they can be perceived differently depending on the distance of the viewer. From farther away, they read as works of minimal abstract and rich texture, but up close, new levels of detail and information emerge.

Rearranged World: Frontier

A print featuring illustrations of 32 wrestling poses caught my eye at a flea market. The original cross-hatch drawings are beautiful in their own right, with amazing details and exquisite compositional qualities. Looking closely at the figures, the images show the amount of pressure in their hands when they grasp each other or are touching the ground.

I reproduced the images on topographical maps of the Alaskan wilderness, which I chose based on the variety of textures and shapes that provide a “landscape” for the figures to inhabit.

Rearranged World: Pacific Rim

Rearranged World: Pacific Rim 2

Title: Rearranged World: Pacific Rim | Medium: mixed media | Dimensions: 15 x 18 x 1"

The works reference, in part, how the Earth is rearranging itself despite us.

The type trays that are the bases for many of the works in the Rearranged World series are not identical. The trays for Pacific Rim are the smallest, have fewer, larger slots and were in the worst condition as many of the metal dividers that separate the slots are loose or missing. For that reason, I created works out of them last which felt like an afterthought. They are not as visually strong as the others and the diagonals actually pin down the works rather than energizing them.

I ended up dismantling these two pieces and re-purposed the trays for another couple of works, which is the advantage of working with found objects–I can take them apart and make them into something else.