Course Description

This interdisciplinary fine arts course results in the development of a body of work around contemporary art topics. Research, concept development and studio practice will combine to broaden your skills and ideas. Stimulating assignments together with experimentation promote analysis and understanding of contemporary art ideas, world cultures and historical periods, and other areas of visual information. Studio production and the communication of concepts visually, verbally and in written form will be combined in this thought-provoking course

Thursday, October 20, 2011


This tryptic is where my inspiration for my thesis work began. I created these three pieces from a self-portrait poem; visually illustrating and highlighting certain parts of the poem. I am continuing to do this with my thesis work.

My question to my audience:
Does the whole poem need to be displayed with the tryptic? Or do they make sense and connect to each other without the poem being present?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Bark and Rocks

This piece consists of bark and some rocks I have gathered and then scanned onto the computer, and then transferred. I love the intricate detail, patterns, and shapes that are within these objects and how they were enhanced through the scanning process. I had no concept in mind when starting this, I just wanted to see what would become of it as I used these objects that really fascinate me.

Female Identity

Patterns can be used as disguises. The functions of disguises can turn you into something you are not or enhance someone you are. In my artwork there are places that both conceal and reveal what is happening. In this series I use silhouettes of the female figure and mask them with collaged flowers and birds. I feel that it is obvious that these are female figures, but their identities are more of a mystery than their genders. The faces themselves are vacant and without features to erase race and ethnicity making the focus on the gender as a whole. The mythology of women is something I am interested in and I am trying to illustrate here. Overall these images act as questions of identity, but mainly they are questions of female identity. I am wondering now if they are too 'pretty' and if that is a negative thing in contemporary art?

Sublime Identity


A (1): to elevate or exalt especially in dignity or honor (2): to render finer (as in purity or excellence)

B: to convert (something inferior) into something of higher worth

In aesthetics, the sublime is the quality of greatness, whether physical, moral, intellectual, metaphysical, aesthetic, spiritual or artistic.

I believe that female identity is sublime. It should be looked at with reverence and care. Identity can be taken and converted or rendered finer.

This body of work is a representation based on my personal identity. Personal references are in the material used, old hymnal sheet music and pages from old German and English bibles. I used these papers to create pieces of “Body Art” that can been seen as a physical make up of my identity. The work has and will continue to grow out of my own identity but take on possible identities of female of today. The work speaks to the idea of identity being something that one can take on and off, and it can enhance or disguise whom the subject is.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Craft or Fine Art?

One of my most recent mediums is carving soap. Some artists consider this craft and others a form of fine arts. The history of carving soap stems back to Northern Thailand where they carved soap flowers to sell at local bazaars. In the past America has been carving soap as a hobby since the late 1800's. Carving soap can also be linked to prisoners in jail carving the soap out of what they could find in their cells. I understand the context of why the soap is being carved should be taken into consideration but should it still be considered craft or in modern day times should it be considered fine arts? Discuss.

Monday, October 10, 2011


Obsession can take many forms. We see here collections of things that may be considered obsessive, also drawing, design, and installation work in which we could argue the artist is obsessive in either the technique or media used. How do you think obsession can aid and abet the artist in his/her work and how does obsession affect you as an artist?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


The above link provides a good explanation and examples of appropriation. Appropriation in art has been a hotly debated issue of late. What is valid and ethical when it comes to appropriation? How much must the artist alter the original to make it his or her own? Does the original become another’s art just by the claims of the new artist? How about photo references? Should the artist cite the photo as a reference or is it not necessary to mention that the work was done from a photo. How does photo reference compare to direct observation. Should the photo that is used for reference be one that was taken by the artist? 

Comment on your ideas and opinions in relation to appropriation. 

Below are two images, please discuss these images through the lens of appropriation as discussed above and how appropriation is used in different ways.