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Year: 2023

Presenter Name: Brian George

Our natural environment plays a critical role in shaping who we are. Every interaction with the landscape, synthetic or natural, defines our perception of reality in physical terms. The limits of our tactile experiences create an understanding of truth through a process of trial and error. Confirming what can and cannot be. It is equally apparent that unexplained phenomena in the environment require the mind to establish narratives that cannot be confirmed through tangible evidence. A non-physical structure forms within the mind to explain the unexplainable. Each structure is unique to an individual's upbringing and personal experience. Whether constructed from religious ideology, personal experience, or emotional recognition -the non-structure is the direct result of physicality.
My research investigates the relationship between non-physical or spiritual narratives upheld by physical institutions. Exploring my upbringing in a devout Christian home, I engage in broader contexts of historicity, American nationalism, and the hierarchy of Western ideals. While engaging in the work, it is essential to confront my personal relationship with the systems and structures I critique and benefit from. Confronting closely held beliefs uncovers a complex emotional connection to death, spiritual surety, and acceptance. As I wrestle with personal biases, the image reflects a similar tension between abstract mark-making and traditional painting techniques. The visual language is negotiating with itself as new elements are introduced to challenge compositional strategies. I approach each artwork like a collage -building up layers of found imagery to challenge the context each element relies on. After a rigorous application of tension, addition, and subtraction I hope to arrive at unsettled conclusions that prompt more questions than answers.
University / Institution: Utah Valley University
Type: Visual Arts
Format: In Person
Presentation #A16
SESSION A (9:00-10:30AM)
Area of Research: Arts
Faculty Mentor: Alexandra Giannell