Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Carl Wilen


The purpose of this thesis is to explain my current body of work in terms of both personal interpretation and by means of relating it to ideas associated with a modern philosophy in painting that focuses on the relationships between the formal elements of line, space, color, and form, called "non-objective" painting. Painting becomes a statement about itself and the way in which paint is manipulated over a given surface. By disregarding traditional concepts of painting, the artist comes into contact with his emotions in a more direct way.

The first half of the paper is devoted to an explanation of ideas associated with contemporary non-objective painting and the role that the modern artist has assumed in carrying on the development of painting in an historical sense. These ideas are supported and made more specific through the discussion of three contemporary painters who have influenced my own work: Thornton Willis, Jake Berthot and Richard Diebenkorn.

The second half of the paper focuses on my personal interpretation of the ideas presented in the first half, by explaining my own work and comparing and contrasting it with the work of the three artists previously mentioned.

I conclude the paper by noting that my approach to painting is not the ultimate means to an end, simply one of the alternatives. A final statement refers back to the beginning of the paper in stressing the uniqueness of contemporary painting and its revolutionizing of the use of color as a pictorial means.

Color illustrations follow along with the text and present examples of my own work and the work of Willis, Berthot and Diebenkorn.

Included in

Painting Commons