Date of Award

Spring 5-17-2018

Author's School

Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts

Author Department/Program

Graduate School of Art

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Visual Art

Degree Type



This thesis is a narrative of personal and material history. Through my work in painting, sculpture, and installation, I seek to share my story of emotional armoring in an attempt to connect to an audience. In my work, I look to my personal memories of growing up in a small, midwestern town and armoring myself with emotional barriers against its social construct of “normalcy.” Inspired by Medieval suits of armor and the characteristics of Goth culture throughout history, I employ my work to present the stage of a theatrical battleground. Creating each of my pieces is a fight for the work, against my own dysfunctional body, and against the fear of appearing abnormal. The following chapters are my exploration into the causes and effects of emotional barriers that turn into psychological cages. I investigate the narrative elements of my work in relation to my fictional narrative—included—and compare my work to that of corresponding artists.


English (en)

Program Director

Patricia Olynyk

Program Director's Department

Graduate School of Art

Thesis Advisor

Monika Weiss

Studio/Primary Advisor

Buzz Spector

Studio/Primary Advisor

Arny Nadler

Committee Member

Richard Krueger

Committee Member

Richard Krueger

Artist's Statement

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