Title page for ETD etd-0612102-105228

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Kupinsky, Debbie
Author's Email Address dkupin1@lsu.edu
URN etd-0612102-105228
Title In the Dark Woods I Lost My Way
Degree Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)
Department Art
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Michelene Walsh Committee Chair
Bobby Silverman Committee Member
Cynthia Handel Committee Member
Kelly Scott Kelly Committee Member
Kimberly Arp Committee Member
  • figurative sculpture
  • ceramics
Date of Defense 2002-05-15
Availability unrestricted
When I had journeyed half our life's way,

I found myself in a shadowed forest.

For I had Lost the path that does not stray

Ah, it is hard to speak of what it was,

That savage forest, dense and difficult,

Which even in recall renews my fear:

So bitter-death is hardly so severe!

Dante Alegheri


Canto 1

Dante's passage refers to the losing of a spiritual path, but for me it refers to the destruction of the past, memory and self. My work deals with the loss of the past and the burdens of memory. It deals with the destruction of the mind and the body by time.

The path in the woods in continuously being destroyed and remade as we make our way through the forest. Landmarks recede into the distance and the unfamiliar looms ahead. It is possible to become unhinged in time and memory, but in the end it is the past that beckons, as if it were a long lost Eden we visited once.

After those who came before us are gone, we are cast upon the road with a bundle of collective memory. It is the carrying of this inanimate mass that changes us. A bundle of accumulated string. Laundry. Memory. Items to be carried wherever we go. There is no escape from the things we carry with us. They simply are. We regard them as actualities of living.

As we are lost we become transformed. It is time that both destroys and transforms the body and the mind. The nature of time is destruction and yet we continue even as we are destroyed, leaving only the memory of the past untouched, as we are able to remake it each day.

This work reveals the incomplete and half remembered. The pieces represent states of being that are metaphorical and real. They depict the metamorphosis of transformation by the ravages of time, as they are whole and unmade simultaneously. The work communicates the temporary nature of the present, as well as the various incarnations we take on throughout our lives.

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