Date of Award

May 2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



Committee Member

David Detrich

Committee Member

Beth Lauritis

Committee Member

Todd McDonald


Intimate Distortions look beyond the stereotypes of nature and conditioned social prescription to reflect upon the complexities and nuances of our contemporary society. As we endeavor to overcome trauma and the negative influences that knock us off balance, Intimate Distortions exist in a complex place between nature and culture – a place of hybridity that indicates something evolved and ‘natural’, but also to the historical, social and cultural constructs that humans continue to exist within. This work explores how we, who are part of the natural world, contrive to mold our identities and present ourselves to others in superficial and fabricated ways. It examines societal expectations of beauty, wealth and success that are entirely manufactured and have little or nothing to do with who we are as individuals, what we need to thrive, or our value as human beings.

My sculptural forms are amalgamations of textiles, cast plastic, epoxy clay and natural material. I specifically use textile fabric as the central focus of the work to provoke reconsideration of our multifarious connections, and how the fabrics we use affix us to a time and place within our culture and in our relationships to one another. The inexpensive yet glamorous textiles used to build the sculptures are a reminder that appearances are easily curated and not a reflection of our true worth.

These hybrids challenge us to discard our striving or the facades we wear and consider moments of connectivity; to remember that we are part of a bigger whole, despite the artificiality and pressures that surround us.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.