Tomorrows Ghosts: Implications of Art

Graduation Date


Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Fine Arts


Music, Dance and Performing Arts

Director of the Honors Program

Gigi Gokcek, PhD

First Reader

Gay Lynch, PhD

Second Reader

Perry Guevara, PhD


The abstract nature of Modern and Postmodern art can lead to a disconnect between the artistic community and their intended audience. Questions such as, “What does it mean?” or “What is this about?” are particularly prevalent in Postmodern dance. Through this piece I will shed light on what an artistic process can create. I will also show what the myriad meanings and interpretations of the final product might be. This practical examination of a choreographic process draws into question the nature of reality, perception, and the multiplicitous nature of being. In examining my choreographic process, I will isolate trauma as a recurring theme (among many others) within the work, and I will further examine the relationship between artmaking and trauma. Trauma can be expressed as a purely physiological phenomenon, namely,through the presence of specific neurotransmitters and patterned thoughts and experiences in the brain. KimererLaMothe expresses the multifaceted nature of dancing and physical embodiment in her book, Why We Dance: APhilosophy of Bodily Becoming. Her ideas on rhythmic bodily becoming and healing create a base to which I relate the process of making art and making dances. In relation to victims of trauma, I argue that the choice making and decisiveness which are produced through an artistic process allow for the deconstruction of traumatic past experiences, and, in turn, provide a means of treating and living with the instability carried in post-traumatic stress (PTSD).

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