Date of Award

5-11-2020

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

Department

Art and Design

First Advisor

Craig Drennen, MFA

Second Advisor

Dr. Susan Richmond

Third Advisor

Jess Jones, MFA

Abstract

The Manual for Neocadia is an ongoing body of work that explores utopian yearning through an emergent fictional republic’s citizen’s handbook. This work mines my experience as a former political extremist and calls on my fascination with literary fiction, history, and intentional communities to explore utopian notions and dynamics of personal and cultural power. Works in The Manual for Neocadia are organized around the eponymous semi-fictional handbook for citizens of the Associated States of Neocadia (ASN). The work takes three forms: a suite of taxonomic copperplate prints; typewritten book pages; and flags. Across the work, flags are studied from three perspectives: flag as symbol, flag as container, and flag as object. Using flags and the ASN as a portmanteau for political imagination and utopian longing I seek forgiveness, cultivate empathy, and attempt to build a better version of my history, myself, and the world.

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