Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



Committee Chair/Advisor

Kathleen Thum

Committee Member

David Detrich

Committee Member

Beth Lauritis


(Un)seen is a collection of sculptures, drawings, and video performance that reveals the unseen physiological and psychological effects stemming from emotional abuse. I use the human body, its anatomy, and contrived anomalies to reshape and give form to emotional abuse that typically remains unseen. The bulk of research in neuroscience and the related fields have focused primarily on the response to visible causes of trauma such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, and combat trauma, leaving the trauma from emotional abuse less acknowledged. Studies of this type of abuse are sadly overlooked due to the lack of an outwardly visible appearance. Despite this, emotional abuse has lasting physical effects on the nervous system and brain which has been documented scientifically. Through sculpture, drawing, and video performance I reveal these various physical qualities and conditions in the form of anomalies and mutations. There are three components in the exhibition, each pairing an image and a form. Plaster carvings are displayed with charcoal and graphite drawings, a latex wall installation with a video performance, and a latex sculpture with a graphite drawing. The form in each of these is a further mutated version of the image it is displayed in proximity to. At the same time, these vulnerable bodily conditions are being reshaped into adaptive forms. When these anomalies are revealed, it leaves room for repair, the gaining back of control, and prompts the viewer to consider the unseen and concealed effects of emotional abuse.



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