For every beginning there is an ending. Classes are over and my first year in graduate school has come to a close. As I make my way through graduate school, I’ve been trying to keep things in perspective and never lose sight of the goal. Today I want to focus on the achievement of the amazing group of artists that are ending their time at Columbia College Chicago. After three years of writing, thinking, and making, they have successfully completed the rite of passage known as the MFA Thesis Exhibition. The exhibition, LIT, features the thesis work of six artists from the Interdisciplinary Book and Paper and Interdisciplinary Arts and Media programs. It’s been amazing to get to know these artists and see their work progress this year, they are simply the nicest most generous group around.



A Mending White is a participatory video text installation that offers the viewer an opportunity to place themselves inside a book of light, interrupting a complacent projection to confront constructions of whiteness and skin privilege. It examines several aspects of these constructions; the paternalistic language of government policy throughout America’s attempts at racial legislation, the language of distancing the white self from responsibility, a reflection on personal and paternal legacy, and the skin itself.” – LIT Columbia College Chicago 2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition Catalogue


A Story, the Truth, and a Screenplay

A Story, the Truth, and a Screenplay is a publication about the artist’s personal experiences growing up as a first generation Mexican American in Chicago. Throughout the narrative, Figueroa explores the cultural difference between her parents’ generation and the generation of her and her cousins. Essays, screenplays, short stories, and vignettes written in the form of elegies explore adolescence, girlhood, body issues, and the transitions within. Dialogue in Spanish and English frame Figueroa’s environment through language while piecing together the life her parents had in Mexico before their immigration to the United States. She recalls their stories through writing in order to bridge the gap between her parent’s experience and her own, while trying to understand their expectations and understanding or her own life as a young queer artist. Supporting the book is a series of five monoprints and poetry broadsides that mimic the text and imagery in the book.” – LIT Columbia College Chicago 2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition Catalogue


The Antigravity Puppet Project

The Antigravity Puppet Project integrates sculptural paper-making and print media with percussion music and sound art. It begins with a self-portrait as a human-scale marionette. The Puppet, its fragmented image and its internal soundscape are played structural details and narrative tendencies of the body’s image in exchange with the spatio-temporal qualities of musical noise generate an environment of performing objects. The allegory of the Puppet is told through percussion composition photogravures, visual scores and data glitches.” LIT Columbia College Chicago 2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition Catalogue



Mo’lasses is an interdisciplinary ethnographic installation inspired from the material collection of the artist, who after beginning ancestral research became inspired by the spiritual folk customs of the rural south. Through careful curation and environmental design, le. Givens aims to conjure a corner that fuses pre- and post-colonial spirit traditions with mundane southern vernacular objects.” – LIT Columbia College Chicago 2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition Catalogue


Words & Vegetables

Words & Vegetables in an editioned artist’s book that explores the nature of memory through a series of autobiographical micro-memoirs, and poetic typographical constructions. The book itself reflects the growing of a garden, with four sections representing the four seasons of the year. Each season thematically groups four types of written works, known as Crops, which are cultivated throughout the book: Memoiries (poetic memories about words or vegetables); Languegetables (one-one poems rooting vegetables in language, and vice versa); Vegetables (giant-font iterations of veggies that draw attention the the physicality of words); and WeedWords (illustrative veggo-verbal growths). Through the progression of these pieces, the book draws strong parallels between words and vegetables as the same thing – entities grown, tended to, and consumed by humans.” – LIT Columbia College Chicago 2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition Catalogue

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Inside of Horse

Image from Lit: 2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition Catalogue


Inside of Horse is a new media, site-specific installation which represents a combination of nature, spirit, text, and architecture. The installation collects China’s anthropology, sociology, and linguistics within an image system. Showing the diversity of philosophies of Oriental Art and social formation is a central focus of the work. While the immediate observable surface and interaction with the piece represents a lineage from Western Art traditions, the thing under steel, the heart of the installation in it’s specular and undulating pattern of light is the Oriental philosophy.” – LIT Columbia College Chicago 2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition Catalogue