This document accompanies my thesis titled, Snakes in the Nest, which was exhibited in the Bevier Gallery for two weeks in April 2016, and consisted of five paintings and one sculpture. In this essay I outline both the artistic influences and theoretical research that shaped the creation of my work. I argue that the construction of my identity has been largely manipulated by a culture of escapist consumerism as well as social conditioning performed by my society to maintain a gender binary. The making of my thesis exhibition sparked an investigation into my ongoing involvement with art. This called for an examination of my relation to pop culture at a time when I was transitioning from childhood to adulthood.
This thesis document is divided into three Sections: Context, Evolution of the Work, and Conclusion. In the first section, I relay anecdotes from my childhood to offer a glimpse of the contemplative space I entered as I was developing my artistic idiom. Next, I list influences from the world of contemporary art in order to situate my work within a creative discourse that is very much of this moment. In the second section, I discuss the making of the artwork, describing how my process evolved as I confronted obstacles. In the final section, I offer both a reflection on the experience of creating this specific body of work and an analysis of the exhibition.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Painting--Themes, motives; Sculpture--Themes, motives; Popular culture in art
Fine Arts Studio (MFA)
Department, Program, or Center
School of Art (CIAS)
Durgee, Shane, "Snakes in the Nest" (2016). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus