Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Touchy-Feely, Gross Stuff
by Robbins, Elise, M.F.A., The University of Mississippi, 2016, 40; 10247707
Abstract (Summary)

Physical affection and visible emotion were not the way of my family. Compassion, concern, judgment, really any sentiment was expressed almost exclusively verbally while I was growing up. To me this very normal, and as an only child, I did not have much to compare it to until I started school. It was there that I saw children and adults convey emotion not just with words but also with a physical display. Though the idea of outwardly expressing emotion was not foreign to me, it was not exactly natural, and I struggled with it. or this reason, I was constantly asking people to describe a sensation as if it were an object.

In this thesis using handmade biomorphic organic based forms, I explore the perplexing concept of emotion; by making a collection of soft sculptures through which the viewer can experience these sensations. These forms are an amalgamation of emotions; physical and psychological brought to life through a process of hand stitching similar and disparate materials together. The final abstract forms are my ideas about what emotions can look and feel like.

Perception, abstract ideas, and textures are described with feeling words such as abrasive, distorted, and mushy. We understand these feelings because of the touch sensation associated with them. Touch may be the most used and the most understated sense that we have, from the second we are born everything becomes tangible. It is through this tangibility that we come to understand our realities. By touching, we prove to ourselves and others what things are undeniable and what only exists in our head. Through a series of fabricated soft sculptures, I have created a collection of structures that embody my comprehension of emotion both physical and mental and that the viewer can experience tangibly and visually.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Thompson, Durant
Commitee: Lutz, Christina, Rougon Chavis, Virginia
School: The University of Mississippi
Department: Fine Arts-Art
School Location: United States -- Mississippi
Source: MAI 56/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Fine arts
Keywords: Original artwork, Sculpture, Touchy-feely
Publication Number: 10247707
ISBN: 9780355049732
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