Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

Legacy Department

Visual Studies

First Advisor

Ireland G. Reqnier

Second Advisor

Robert S. Demter

Third Advisor

James A. Stockham


The purpose of this thesis is to discuss the major ideas which have motivated the work I have done while studying for my Master of Fine Arts at Clemson University. The thesis begins with the geometric subject matter of the first paintings and explains how this geometry is an orderly structure which stands as a metaphore for the orderly structures occurring in the world. The planar structuring of these pictures is identified with the concept structure of points of view inherent in bodies of thought. In the discussion of these works, mention is made of the golden ratio, noting that it played an important part in the composition of these pictures. Following, there is an explanation of how pure geometric abstraction was abandoned in favor of naturalisticly represented objects. The objects are first seen as subjects upon which the geometry may operate. Later the objects take on interest for their own sake, as standing for sttitudes or character. There is a discussion of the changes in technique which attended this change of subject matter and the concept of grain size is introduced and explained as it pertains to the change of technique. The thesis then sets out what I regard as the nature of and the reason for making art: that the work stand as a useful, generalized metaphore for conditions that obtain in the world. It is stated that the consquences of this definition are that the subject matter be unspecific as to individual objects or environments and that the sytle of painting be flexible. The text then contains a statement of the impossibility of separating techique and subject matter and closes with an appraisal of the progress my skill as a creator of images and as a maker of paintings.