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 Degree Discipline: Art History
Cassoni in America: An Investigation of Three Major Themes

Cassoni in America: An Investigation of Three Major Themes

Date: December 1971
Creator: Rice, Ralph Albert
Description: This study is an investigation of the subject matter of eighty Italian cassone paintings of the fifteenth century now located in the United States and answers a four-part question: (1) What were the major themes pictured on cassoni panels during the Quattrocento? (2) Were the themes of cassoni in Quattrocento Italy predominantly of a religious or secular nature? (3) If secular subject matter was dominant in cassone painting, was this a reflection of the newly founded tastes of aristocratic, wealthy and middle classes? (4) Did cassoni mirror the way these classes viewed themselves and the place occupied by women in society?
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Pieter Bruegel the Elder's Apocalyptic Fortitude

Pieter Bruegel the Elder's Apocalyptic Fortitude

Date: December 1997
Creator: Burris, Suzanne Lynn
Description: This thesis examines Pieter Bruegel the Elder's Fortitude, 1560, a print from the Seven Virtues series. Fortitude stands out as an anomaly within the cycle because it contains several allusions to the Book of Revelation. The linkage of Fortitude to the writings of St. John is important because it challenges previous iconographic and iconological analyses of the composition. Analysis of Fortitude's compositional elements is provided, along with an examination of the virtue tradition. Additionally, an exploration of sixteenth-century apocalypticism is included, as well as an examination of the artistic influences that may have inspired Bruegel. This thesis concludes that Fortitude's apocalyptic allusions do not seem unusual for an artist familiar with St. John's prophecies, influenced by Hieronymus Bosch, and living in an age of apocalypticism.
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Synthesis of the Personal and the Political in the Works of May Stevens

Synthesis of the Personal and the Political in the Works of May Stevens

Date: May 1998
Creator: Abbott, Janet Gail
Description: This thesis is an investigation of the way in which the painter May Stevens (b. 1924) synthesizes her personal experiences and political philosophy to form complex and enduring works of art. Primary data was accumulated through an extended interview with May Stevens and by examining her works on exhibit in New York and Boston. An analysis of selected works from her "Big Daddy" and "Ordinary/Extraordinary" series revealed how her personal feelings about her own family became entwined with larger political issues. As an important member of the feminist art movement that evolved during the 1970s, she celebrated this new kinship among women in paintings that also explored the contradictions in their lives. In more recent work she has explored complex social issues such as teenage prostitution, sexism, and child abuse in a variety of artistic styles and media. This study investigates how May Stevens continues to portray issues of international significance in works that consistently engage the viewer on a personal, almost visceral level.
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Southern Genre Painting and Illustration from 1830 to 1890

Southern Genre Painting and Illustration from 1830 to 1890

Date: December 1997
Creator: Akard, Carrie Meitzner
Description: The purpose of this thesis is to give a concise view of stylistic, iconographical, and iconological trends in Southern genre paintings and illustrations between 1830 and 1890 by native Southern artists and artists who lived at least ten years in the South. Exploration of artworks was accomplished by compiling as many artworks as possible per decade, separating each decade by dominant trends in subject matter, and researching to determine political and/or social implications associated with and affecting each image. Historical documents and the findings of other scholars revealed that many artworks carried political overtones reflecting the dominant thought of the white ruling class during the period while the significance and interpretation of other artworks was achieved by studying dominant personal beliefs and social practices.
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When Reality Was Surreal: Lee Miller's World War II War Correspondence for  Vogue

When Reality Was Surreal: Lee Miller's World War II War Correspondence for Vogue

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Date: December 2003
Creator: Rose, Josh
Description: During World War II, Lee Miller was an accredited war correspondent for Vogue magazine. Miller was trained as a surrealist photographer by Man Ray, and her wartime work, both photographic and written, is indicative of a combination of journalism and surrealism. This thesis examines Lee Miller's war correspondence within the context of Vogue magazine, establishing parallels between the photographs and writing to determine how surrealism informs it stylistically and ideologically. Using surrealist techniques of juxtaposition and an unmanipulated photographic style, and the surrealist concepts of the Marvelous and Convulsive Beauty, Miller presented the war as a surreality, or a surreal reality. This study concludes by using Miller's approach to suggest a new concept of journalistic practice: surrealist journalism.
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An Examination of American Sideshow Banners as Folk Art, ca. 1920-1960

An Examination of American Sideshow Banners as Folk Art, ca. 1920-1960

Date: December 2002
Creator: Weimer, Emery Christian
Description: This thesis redresses the lack of scholarly attention paid to painted circus banners produced in the United States during the first half of the twentieth century by exploring the extent to which American folk art painting scholarship, methodologies, and objects can be used to articulate the meaning and significance of banner painting. This study expands the disciplinary treatment of banner painting by introducing domesticated art as a means of representing non-academic art produced in the U.S. The thesis also presents a model for exploring banner painting after identifying traditional American folk art painting methodologies, which fail to investigate banner painting style, format, and artistic training associated with banner work.
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Hojas Volantes: José Guadalupe Posada, the Corrido, and the Mexican Revolution

Hojas Volantes: José Guadalupe Posada, the Corrido, and the Mexican Revolution

Date: August 1996
Creator: Mock, Melody
Description: This thesis examines the imagery of Jose Guadalupe Posada in the context of the Mexican Revolution with particular reference to the corrido as a major manifestation of Mexican culture. Particular emphasis is given to three corridos: "La Cucaracha," "La Valentina," and "La Adelita." An investigation of Posada's background, style, and technique places him in the tradition of Mexican art. Using examples of works by Posada which illustrate Mexico's history, culture, and politics, this thesis puts Posada into the climate of the Porfiriato and Revolutionary Mexico. After a brief introduction to the corrido, a stylistic analysis of each image, research into the background of the song and subject matter, and comments on the music draw together the concepts of image, music, and text.
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The Desires of Rebecca Horn: Alchemy and the Mechanics of Interpretation

The Desires of Rebecca Horn: Alchemy and the Mechanics of Interpretation

Date: August 1997
Creator: Dunlop, Douglas Donald
Description: The purpose of this thesis is to analyze the use of alchemy within the work of Rebecca Horn, to elucidate its presence in her work, and to illuminate its purpose as a personal philosophy and as a creative tool. The use of alchemy within Horn's work occurs as a process of revelation and transformation. Alchemy is revealed as a spiritual philosophy and as an interpretative system through the changes that occur in Horn's oeuvre. Throughout Horn's career, alchemy has developed into an interpretive system, a type of spiritual and cosmic perspective, that allows the artist to study, access, and meld diverse realities (sacred and profane) and diverse social systems (religious and scientific) into a more holistic and spiritually infused reality for herself and society-at-large. The purpose of her work is to help reinvest contemporary life with a spiritual presence by offering a model and a means of bringing the sacred into the profane.
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A Stylistic Analysis of American Indian Portrait Photography in Oklahoma, 1869-1904

A Stylistic Analysis of American Indian Portrait Photography in Oklahoma, 1869-1904

Date: May 2001
Creator: Nelson, Amy
Description: This thesis studies the style of Native American portrait photographs of William S. Soule (1836-1908), John K. Hillers (1834-1925), and William E. Irwin (1871-1935), who worked in Oklahoma from 1869 to 1904. The examination of the three men's work revealed that each artist had different motivations for creating Native American portrait photographs, and a result, used a distinct style. However, despite the individual artistic styles, each artist conformed to Native American stereotypes common during the nineteenth-century. The thesis includes a discussion of the history of the area, photographer biographies, a stylistic analysis of the photographs, and how the images fit into American Indian stereotypes.
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Style and the Art of Chaim Soutine: Ethnicity, Nationalism and Geography in the Critical Reception and Historiography

Style and the Art of Chaim Soutine: Ethnicity, Nationalism and Geography in the Critical Reception and Historiography

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Date: August 2006
Creator: Grance, Heather Anne
Description: This thesis argues that art criticism published during Soutine's lifetime emphasizes ethnicity, nationalism and geography in discussions of the artist's style. These critical discussions have influenced the historiography of Soutine published after his death, resulting in a continued emphasis on style that includes references to ethnicity. Ethnicity, nationalism and geography are identified in the critical reception and historiography by noting references, both specific and implied, to Jewishness, French art, and foreign status (among others). These references are analyzed in terms of existing scholarship that addresses concepts of ethnicity and nationalism, and with consideration to how the critical reception has impacted the historiography.
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Images of women shopping in the art of Kenneth Hayes Miller and Reginald Marsh, ca 1920-1930.

Images of women shopping in the art of Kenneth Hayes Miller and Reginald Marsh, ca 1920-1930.

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Date: August 2006
Creator: Blake, Amanda Beth
Description: This thesis examines images of women shopping in the art of Kenneth Hayes Miller and Reginald Marsh during the 1920s and 1930s. New York City's Fourteenth Street served Kenneth Hayes Miller and Reginald Marsh, respectively, as a location generating the inspiration to study and visually represent its contemporaneity. Of particular interest to this thesis are relationships between developments in shopping and the images of women shopping in and around Fourteenth Street that populate the paintings of Miller and Marsh. Although, as Ellen Todd Wiley has shown, the emerging notion of the New Woman helped to shape female identity at this time, what remains unstudied are dimensions that geographically specific, historical developments in shopping contributed to the construction of female identity which, this thesis argues, Marsh and Miller related to, by locating in, the department store and bargain store.
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Images of a Gendered Kingship: Visual Representations of Hatshepsut and Her Influence on Images of Nefertiti

Images of a Gendered Kingship: Visual Representations of Hatshepsut and Her Influence on Images of Nefertiti

Date: August 2006
Creator: Hilliard, Kristina Marie
Description: I investigate why gendered images of Hatshepsut influenced androgynous images of Nefertiti in New Kingdom Egypt and how Nefertiti and Akhenaten used their images in the promotion of their monotheistic religion; through a contextual, stylistic and feminist examination of the images. Hatshepsut cultivated images of herself to legitimize her rule in relation to canonical kings before her. Similarly, Nefertiti represented herself as a figure indiscernible from Akhenaten, creating an image of female co-rulership. Although the visual representations of both Hatshepsut and Nefertiti differ, the concepts behind each are analogous. They both manipulated androgyny to create images displaying powerful women equal in status to male Egyptian kings.
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Iconographic Analysis of the Armadillo and Cosmic Imagery within Art Associated with the Armadillo World Headquarters, 1970 - 1980

Iconographic Analysis of the Armadillo and Cosmic Imagery within Art Associated with the Armadillo World Headquarters, 1970 - 1980

Date: December 2006
Creator: Richmond, Jennifer Lynn
Description: This thesis draws upon recent, art historical scholarship in iconography and semiotics to identify and analyze key images in an iconographic program associated with murals, paintings, and posters related to the Austin, Texas music venue, the Armadillo World Headquarters, 1970-1980. Resources include South Austin Museum of Popular Culture, the Center for American History at the University of Texas, Austin, personal communications, and publications concerning the artists, music and history of Austin and the Armadillo World Headquarters. There are five chapters as follows: Introduction, History of the Armadillo World Headquarters, Analysis of the Armadillo Mural and Freddie King Painting, Analysis of Posters for the Grand Opening and the Michael Murphey Cosmic Cowboy Concert, and Conclusion.
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Passionate transformation in vernicle images.

Passionate transformation in vernicle images.

Date: December 2004
Creator: Hoffman, J. Starr
Description: This thesis will examine the iconography of late-thirteenth- through fifteenth-century images of St. Veronica's veil, also known as vernicles. In the late Middle Ages, vernicle iconography changed from iconic representations of Christ's face toward graphic imagery of Christ's suffering during his Passion. These passionate transformations, as I have called them, were affected by the Roman Sudarium relic, popular devotion to Christ's suffering and humanity during his Passion, and the Catholic ritual of Mass. This thesis will consider how the function of vernicle images during Mass was reflected in their iconography throughout Europe between 1250 and 1500.
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Feminist Design Methodology: Considering the Case of Maria Kipp

Feminist Design Methodology: Considering the Case of Maria Kipp

Date: December 2003
Creator: Lawrence, Anne
Description: This thesis uses the work and career of the textile designer Maria Kipp to stage a prolegomena concerning how to write about a female designer active during the middle of the twentieth century. How can design historians incorporate new methodologies in the writing of design history? This thesis explores the current literature of feminist design history for solutions to the potential problems of the traditional biography and applies these to the work and career of Kipp. It generates questions concerning the application of methodologies, specifically looking at a biographical methodology and new methodologies proposed by feminist design historians. Feminist writers encourage scholarship on unknown designers, while also they call for a different kind of writing and methodology. The goal of this thesis is to examine how these new histories are written and in what ways they might inspire the writing of Kipp into design history.
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Dallas as Region: Mark Lemmon's Gothic Revival Highland Park Presbyterian Church

Dallas as Region: Mark Lemmon's Gothic Revival Highland Park Presbyterian Church

Date: August 2004
Creator: Bagley, Julie Arens
Description: Informed by the methodology utilized in Peter Williams's Houses of God: Region, Religion, and Architecture in the United States (1997), the thesis examines Mark Lemmon's Gothic Revival design for the Highland Park Presbyterian Church (1941) with special attention to the denomination and social class of the congregation and the architectural style of the church. Beginning with the notion that Lemmon's church is more complex than an expression of the Southern cultural region defined by Williams, the thesis presents the opportunity to examine the church in the context of the unique cultural region of the city of Dallas. Church archival material supports the argument that the congregation deliberately sought to identify with both the forms and ideology of the late nineteenth-century Gothic Revival in the northeastern United States, a result of the influence of Dallas's cultural region.
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Texas Cowboy as Myth: Visual Representations from the Late Twentieth Century

Texas Cowboy as Myth: Visual Representations from the Late Twentieth Century

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Date: August 2006
Creator: Seaton, Melynda
Description: The working cowboy remains part of the contemporary culture of Texas. A visual record of him appeared early in the state's history, in daguerreotypes, followed by representations in contemporary black and white as well as color photographs, film and video. Although the way of life for the Texas cowboy has changed, it remains a thriving part of the Texas economy, society, and culture. Moreover, the image of the cowboy has permeated popular culture and fine art. This paper explores what late twentieth century popular culture and fine art images of the cowboy signify, emphasizing aspects of how they signify in relation to an existing tradition of photographic representations. Using Barthes' "Myth Today," it considers how the documentary aspect of early photographic representations of cowboys is transformed in contemporary popular culture and fine art to become mythology, for example, by the exaggeration of features of dress to connote ideals allegorically.
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Art Criticism and the Gendering of Lee Bontecou's Art, ca. 1959 - 1964

Art Criticism and the Gendering of Lee Bontecou's Art, ca. 1959 - 1964

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Date: December 2005
Creator: Estrada-Berg, Victoria
Description: This thesis identifies and analyzes gendering in the art writing devoted to Lee Bontecou's metal and canvas sculptures made from the 1959 - 1964. Through a careful reading of reviews and articles written about Bontecou's constructions, this thesis reconstructs the context of the art world in the United States at mid-century and investigates how cultural expectations regarding gender directed the reception of Bontecou's art, beginning in 1959 and continuing through mid-1960s. Incorporating a description of the contemporaneous cultural context with description of the constructions and an analysis of examples of primary writing, the thesis chronologically follows the evolution of a tendency in art writing to associate gender-specific motivation and interpretation to one recurring feature of Bontecou's works.
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Complementary Dualities: The Significance of East/West Architectural Difference in Paquimé

Complementary Dualities: The Significance of East/West Architectural Difference in Paquimé

Date: August 2005
Creator: Hughes, Delain
Description: This thesis provides the first formal and phenomenological analysis of the architecture in Paquimé, otherwise known as Casas Grandes, Chihuahua, Mexico. The eastern and western halves of the city are divided by a stone wall and reservoirs. The monuments on the east are rectilinear, puddled adobe structures used primarily for domestic and manufacturing purposes. The buildings on the west, on the other hand, are open earth mounds lined in stone for public displays. This thesis analyzes each building individually, the relationship of the structures to one another, and the entire layout of Paquimé in order to better understand Paquimian visual culture.
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Personal Passions and Carthusian Influences Evident in Rogier Van Der Weyden's  Crucified Christ between the Virgin and Saint John and Diptych of the Crucifixion

Personal Passions and Carthusian Influences Evident in Rogier Van Der Weyden's Crucified Christ between the Virgin and Saint John and Diptych of the Crucifixion

Date: May 2006
Creator: Smith, Tamytha Cameron
Description: This thesis examines Rogier Van Der Weyden's two unique fifteenth century Crucifixions, The Crucified Christ Between the Virgin and Saint John and The Diptych of the Crucifixion, in light of Carthusian beliefs, practices and relevant devotional texts. The specific text used to support this examination is the Vita Christi by Ludolph of Saxony, which in part deals specifically with the Hours of the Passion. Ludolph's text is given visual form in Rogier's paintings and supports the assertion that Rogier and Ludolph were connected by a shared belief and worldview. Key aspects of Rogier's life, supported by original documentation- familial ties, associates, patrons, use of finances, and his close involvement with the Carthusians-- support this assertion. Other models of connections of belief, evidenced through artist's work, are corroborated in the work of Grunewald, Sluter and Durer.
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The Flora and Fauna in Eighteenth-Century Colonial Mexican Casta Paintings

The Flora and Fauna in Eighteenth-Century Colonial Mexican Casta Paintings

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Date: May 2006
Creator: Torres, Anita Jacinta
Description: The primary objective of this thesis is to identify patterns of appearance among the flora and fauna of selected eighteenth-century New Spanish casta paintings. The objectives of the thesis are to determine what types of flora and fauna are present within selected casta paintings, whether the flora and fauna's provenance is Spanish or Mexican and whether there are any potential associations of particular flora and fauna with the races being depicted in the same composition. I focus my flora and fauna research on three sets of casta paintings produced between 1750 and 1800: Miguel Cabrera's 1763 series, José Joaquín Magón's 1770 casta paintings, and Andrés de Islas' 1774 sequence. Although the paintings fall into the same genre and within a period of a little over a decade, they nevertheless offer different visions of New Spain's natural bounty and include objects designed to satisfy Europe's interest in the exotic.
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Walter MacEwen: A forgotten episode in American art.

Walter MacEwen: A forgotten episode in American art.

Date: May 2009
Creator: Cross, Rhonda Kay
Description: Despite having produced an impressive body of work and having been well-received in his lifetime, the career of nineteenth-century American expatriate artist Walter MacEwen has received virtually no scholarly attention. Assimilating primary-source materials, this thesis provides the first serious examination of MacEwen's life and career, thereby providing insight into a forgotten episode in American art.
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James Rosenquist: Process, Representation, and the Simulacrum

James Rosenquist: Process, Representation, and the Simulacrum

Date: May 2009
Creator: Murphy, Erin Kathleen
Description: American artist James Rosenquist is best known for his Pop Art paintings, which existing scholarship has studied in regard to its formal features and social and cultural significance. Rosenquist's manner of working, specifically his process, remains understudied. Focusing on three paintings and three corresponding collages, President Elect (1960-61, 1964), Star Thief (1980), and The Stowaway Peers Out at the Speed of Light (2000), this thesis considers features of Rosenquist's studio practice to propose a new interpretation involving the representational status and significance of the artist's collages and paintings that is elucidated by French theorist Jean Baudrillard's concept of the simulacrum. Additionally, the thesis addresses the treatment of Rosenquist's collages and paintings in publications and exhibitions since 1992 by suggesting how Baudrillard's ideas about the simulacrum clarify the museological narrativizing and consumption of the artist's work.
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Faith and politics: The socio-political discourses engaged by Mexican ex-voto paintings from the nineteenth-century and beyond.

Faith and politics: The socio-political discourses engaged by Mexican ex-voto paintings from the nineteenth-century and beyond.

Date: May 2006
Creator: Hamman, Amy
Description: The Universalis Ecclesiae of 1508 authorized Spanish colonization of the Americas in return for the conversion of native populations to Christianity. From its inception therefore, the Mexican nation lived an alliance between Church and State. This alliance promoted the transfer of Castilian Catholicism to American shores. Catholic practices, specifically the ex-voto tradition, visualize this intermingling of religion and politics. The ex-voto is a devotional painting that expresses gratitude to a religious figure for his/her intervention in a moment of peril. It is commissioned by the devotee as a means of direct communication to the divine. This project analyzes 40 Mexican ex-votos for their reflection of political issues in Mexico. I assert that the Mexican ex-votos engage discussions of social politics. To support this argument, visualizations of socio-political discourses such as the Virgin of Guadalupe as a national religious symbol, police action and economic disparity were examined.
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