Date of Award

December 2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



Committee Member

Kathleen Thum

Committee Member

Todd McDonald

Committee Member

Andrea Feeser


Abject Adaptations is a body of work that contemplates harmful, external forces surrounding women’s bodies and how these bodies adapt in order to possess agency. The work examines these external forces, adaptations and agencies using a variety of conflicting visual cues that border on the grotesque, as well as the beauty and playfulness of highly rendered illustration. Processes include the application of mixed media techniques that layer watercolor, watercolor pencil, colored pencil, graphite pencil and acrylic paint. These techniques provide a colorful and playful dichotomy to the abject forms being rendered. The cartoonish way the forms are rendered make them appear anthropomorphic. Despite their grotesque appearance, their liveliness could invite the viewer to interact with said form. Through this body of work, I contemplate the struggles of an abject body, as well as point out the collective ingenuities and adaptations that display the strength and endurance of the abject body.



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