This body of work and research is focused upon finding connections between the artist’s personal trajectory, Surrealist ideology, and Feminist texts. Starting with the Surrealist’s ideology of the unconscious, dreams, and use of objects, the artist investigates the eroticism and fetishization of female imagery. Surrealist work is brimming with portrayals of women as man’s mediator, muse, femme-enfant [child-woman], source and object of man’s desire, and the embodiment of l’amour fou [crazy love]. These representations of women depicted through fragmented female bodies transform into objects to be easily used and consumed, like furniture or food. The artist investigates how Surrealist women artists have reclaimed female bodies through irony, humor, and confrontation to problematize their position within the movement. By utilizing the subjects of self representation, magic/alchemy, and animal surrogates, these artists become the harbingers of the contemporary women’s art movement. Certain trends within this movement are recognized as: the space-making for the unquantifiable in order to actualize the unspoken, unseen, and the inconceivable; the use of wedding dresses and hosiery as surrogates for the female body which brings critical thought to the institution of marriage and the industry of weddings; and the consumable female body through the use of food metaphor. The artist accesses a variety of text to discuss narratives containing symbolism relating to her work such as Clarissa Pinkola-Estés’ examination of the Bluebeard fairytale and Andrea Dworkin’s interpretations of Kōbō Abe’s novel Woman in the Dunes. Through the materiality, mortality, and performative Sisyphean labor involved in the artist’s body of work, she associates her personal narrative of domestic violence, divorce, and addiction to her on going evaluation.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Feminism in art; Body image in art; Sex role in art; Marriage in art

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Fine Arts Studio (MFA)

Department, Program, or Center

School of Art (CIAS)


Elizabeth Kronfield

Advisor/Committee Member

Michael Amy

Advisor/Committee Member

Heidi C. Nickisher


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at N72.F45 T33 2016


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes