Term of Award

Spring 2014

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Art

Committee Chair

Jessica Burke

Committee Member 1

Marc Mitchell

Committee Member 2

Julie McGuire


The paintings in this series depict sensations and forms drawn from a collaged, painted surface, referencing examples of painting from the Early Renaissance and the pure Formalism of the mid 20th century. Collage materials lend both conceptual and physical directions to the compositions, in that it is symbolic of the multi layered experience of modern people in a technological society. Imitating painting’s gestural, linear energy in an illusory manner, the paper and paint layers invert expected hierarchies of space. I am analyzing the condition of the painter, the ideas of painting as an activity and product, with myself at the center as ‘producer’, exposing not only substrate, but also methodology, through varied paint applications. The act of making the painting is a self-reflexive exercise meant to cause the viewer to reflect upon their own act of looking, questioning the relationship between presentation and understanding. Although each object begins with traditional paint application, I quickly move to experimental modes of craft to explore compositional juxtapositions that arise in process allowing my work to evolve independent of the historic source material. Following the development of the base surface, the collage elements are applied and using both actual collage and implied collage I arrive at the specific balance between ambiguous forms and space. The edge of the panel is used as a boundary in order to reassert the painting’s formal and physical properties, like the exposed wood grain, but what is contained is equal to what is omitted. Both the eccentric edges and the palettes of many of the objects are inspired by historic models. The science of architectural perspective and color scheme also become part of the vocabulary of the painting reflecting atmosphere or clarity, in either concept or reality. I am always conscious of my use of space and the forms interacting inside as a reflection of the peculiar intersection of people and technology I observe everyday. Is the availability of communication technology adversely affecting our actual interactions? This work is intended to communicate this collapsed experience of the real and the virtual and provoke an awareness in the viewer.

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