Date of Submission

Spring 2019

Academic Programs and Concentrations


Project Advisor 1

Barbara Ess

Abstract/Artist's Statement

Who am I and what do I do about it? I come to a clearing in my mind. It is a landscape, constantly in flux: people running in and out, feelings swelling and crashing down, understanding moving in and out of focus. I am confused. I watch people and the ways they move, engage with each other, engage with the world, and wonder: how do I engage with myself, my surroundings, and the people who exist within them? Do I do it normally? Probably not. Maybe I should be asking if I do it well, or if the way I do it fulfills me, but those aren’t always the modes of questioning that I jump to. We begin from a similar point: I am me, and that is the world. There is an imposed space between subject and object, a space which we constantly navigate the boundaries of in our interactions with the world, as well as in our interactions with photography. But there is no real space. I exist within the world. It is not separate from me, I am a part of it. I am a particle in a very large sea. I am not unimportant, I exist as a small fraction of a whole, as well as a whole in itself. It is bigger than me. Infinity divided by one. What do I do about it?

There is a warm light. I want to touch it. Like a moth, I throw myself at it with no concern for my own physicality, I am just directed by it. The light is pleasure, fulfillment, and meaning. It is contentment, happiness, bliss. It is more than that. It is ecstasy. I move toward it. It appears closer and closer in my field of vision, until my eyes are filled with glowing white. I catch a glimpse, then look away. If I were to take in too much at once, what could happen? Maybe I would never feel it again. Maybe I would only feel it forever. Both would be too much. I need balance, though I am still trying to find it.

Moments of wholeness are paired with ones of intense uncertainty, the strange world makes its presence known. I am thankful for the strangeness. It keeps my stomach churning, my heart surging, my eyes darting. There is bliss somewhere in the peculiar. I become one with the uncertainty. I become a beam of light.

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