Graduation Date


Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Fine Arts


Art, Art History and Design

Director of the Honors Program

Lynn Sondag, MFA

First Reader

Thomas Burke, MFA

Second Reader

Kara Davis, MFA


This project seeks to answer how individual voices are formed through dance and choreography. The answer to this question was discovered through physicalized research and embodying concepts and tasks during my Senior Project choreography process. My dancers and I experimented with the idea of self versus society: how do we differentiate our own artistic voices from the voices of those around us? How do we remain ourselves when we are so greatly influenced by society? Artistic voice greatly influences and forms our identities as humans. The answers to these questions lie within personal aesthetics, the philosophical study of beauty and taste which is self-defined. Greek philosopher Plato writes about art as imitation of reality and the mimicking of other art. As an artist and choreographer, I am imitating the dance and life processes I have experienced: different choreographic techniques, dealing with injury, world travels, and other artistic practices. These processes have both removed me and surrounded me in dance. Even when I am unaware of it, I am constantly influenced by observations I make daily. Is there such thing as original ideas? The information I have cultivated is imitated, as Plato said. However, because it is being filtered through my own artistic voice it becomes my own work. I have also been greatly inspired by many processes and experiences. Does this inspiration cause imitation, or does it become an original idea? Ultimately, our individual voices, both artistic and personal identities, are influenced by those people around us and by our life experiences.

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