Defense Date

2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts

Department

Painting and Printmaking

First Advisor

Gregory Volk

Second Advisor

Ruth Bolduan

Third Advisor

Ron Johnson

Abstract

Imagine one million and six hundred thousand years ago — a prehistoric character points. There in the moistened soil, the hominid Homo habilis draws a line, inscribing with her finger the first mark. At the core of my work is a meditation on this very scene as the otherwise unknowable origins of image making. And at the center of this discovery is a prehistoric woman — a previously invisible character within human evolution. My work aims to insert these characters into the origins of tool use, image making, and other supposed markers of humanness while also examining historical representations of women. Like science fiction, the field of physical anthropology allows me to reimagine our past, or even our future, with a criticality of the ways in which patriarchal and religious structures have shaped our understanding of human evolution and our representations of our past. In substituting aliens for extinct species of human ancestors and the unknown of space for the primordial earth as we will never know it, I have a vast imaginable world within which to invent and recreate narratives of origin and discovery.

Rights

© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

5-11-2016

Included in

Fine Arts Commons

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