Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts


Craft/Material Studies

First Advisor

Jack Wax

Second Advisor

Bohyun Yoon

Third Advisor

Hillary Waters Fayle


Flameworking is a tedious process that demands all of your attention and focus. Making multiples of a shape in this process allows my body and mind to fall into a rhythm. During these times, it allows my anxious mind to be quieted and helps me dive into processing past memories, trauma, and grief. It is commonly suggested in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy practices to find an activity to do that is both physical and repetitive to work through grief. This stimulates the physical and mental parts of the body, both areas where the effects of grief and trauma are held. Relaxing into the process of creating glass chains has allowed me to find a practice that fits into this category of physical, yet repetitive. I am able to both work through my mental roadblocks, while simultaneously creating an object that communicates my past experiences in an ambiguous way. This has aided me in looking at my own story through a new perspective.

Glass is a material that exists with many inherent dichotomies; it is fragile yet strong, clear yet visible, soft yet sharp and hard. These same contradictions are representative of many of my experiences growing up. Chain as an object completely changes in context and function when it is made through glass processes.

Through my written thesis, I plan to explore both chain as symbol, giving representation to the complex feelings from a transient childhood, as well as how labor and tedious processes can play a key role in the healing of the past. I will discuss methods of processing and overcoming grief and trauma. Through the context of all these topics overlapping, I hope to paint a clear picture of my process & research.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission