Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Interdisciplinary Studies


Interdisciplinary Studies

First Advisor

Sara Clark


Artist Statement

I have always found comfort and warmth in my family. When I am not with them, I find myself clinging to the objects they leave behind as a substitute in their absence. As I began to re-create these objects through paintings and ceramics, I realized that I was creating symbolic portraits of my family. These portraits are tangible family moments preserved in pigment and clay.

In recent years, my siblings were deployed to war and I began to represent them as various instruments. These instruments, both musical and tools of war, chronicle who they were and who they are now. Where I once presented guitars and violins, now I include rifles and bombs.

In my painting process, I use subtle lighting techniques to reveal objects hidden in the shadows. What little light is present reveals a trigger on a rifle or a string on a violin. I want the viewer to consider firing a shot or striking a chord.

My ceramic sculptures also take on both attributes of weaponry and music. I sculpt in porcelain and all the pieces are given the resonating chamber (f-holes) of a violin. Although the pieces resemble bombs and grenades, the hollow white porcelain contrasts the destructive purpose of a weapon to beautiful forms that may be capable of producing a tune. These pieces mirror how I see my siblings, as once beautiful souls that are now used as instruments of war.


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Date of Submission