Date of Submission
Academic Programs and Concentrations
Project Advisor 1
Ben is my partner, but this piece isn’t about our love. Our personal relationship has
impacted my life in such a way that its existence marks the death of an old way of life for me.
Portraiture has always been a way for me to nurture relationships and feelings for
characters/individuals I imagine as perfect. Creating drawings in graphite, charcoal and ink let
me indulge in my desire to get closer to the subject, connecting physically with paper in
substitute of the subject. Monarch is my first divergence from my usual idealization of a person
-- I have learned to appreciate the raw and uncensored reality of one. Prints of digitally-captured
photos juxtapose the reality of their being to the image of them in my head. This first, true
physical connection demands a more layered landscape -- a penetrating sensation in order to be
visually translated. Although featured in memorial-style drawings and above an altar, the subject
is not dead. The figure is alive yet celebrated as a monarch that is more than man -- the altar is
put on display in memorial of my past. Expressions, phrases and form were put together as the
connective tissues within the installation -- contributions from me and our personal relationship.
In the piece I am able to self-reflect -- the project could not be complete without me, I recognize
that I am a vital part of it. As realistic as his depiction is on this wall, this is still my perspective
and the piece is limited/warped by that.
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Gutierrez Torres, Michelle G., "Monarch" (2019). Senior Projects Spring 2019. 282.