For partial fulfillment of my Senior Independent Study Thesis Project, I intend to create two bodies of work that will illustrate the tragic reality of gun homicides in America. First of all, I plan to create a statistical piece that will illustrate the number of individuals between the ages of 0-24 that were killed by gun homicide in 1996. During this year (1996), I was involved in two incidents in which guns were pulled on my friends and me. My friends and I were fortunate to escape these confrontations. However, many children are less fortunate and become victims of gun homicides. This body of work will be divided into three age brackets and labeled by the number of deaths that occurred in those age groups. Furthermore, the guns will be duplicated and mass-produced by pressing clay into plaster molds that were made from three toy guns. Once the duplication of guns is complete, I intend to transfer photographic images onto the guns. Hopefully, the images of the children on the guns will send a powerful message of lost innocence and the senseless killings that occur in our society on a daily basis. The image transferred onto the clay guns will be made possible through the use of liquid light. Moreover, the liquid light is a significant element that will enhance and bring this body of work to completion. The liquid light is the only substance that allows photographic images to be permanently transferred to any material. Without the liquid light, this body of work would lack the powerful images of children on the guns. Ultimately, the images of children on the guns are what make this such a powerful and meaningful work of art.
The other body of work will reveal the life story of a young man (0 - 18 years old) whose life tragically ends from being shot. The piece will contain three life-size figures that illustrate the chronological growth of that individual. I will make the figures by using plaster-coated gauze molded over human models. The figures will be coated with a reflective material such as aluminum, metal, lead, or mirror. The purpose of having a mirrored surface is to enable the viewer to insert him or herself in the piece and have some interaction with it as well. In addition, framed images such as letters, photographs, report cards, etc., will be incorporated in the installation. These images will assist in depicting the dreams, conflicts, and events that occur in the lives of many young children. The goal of this project is to encourage the viewer to think about the dilemmas in our society that involve children and guns. However, the proper materials are necessary to complete this project. The plaster-coated gauze is a vital material that will strengthen the overall composition of the project. The plaster gauze is the only material I have worked with that is able to duplicate the exact contour, detail, and shape of anything it encompasses. Therefore, it would make sense to use plaster-coated gauze to create the realistic quality of human life that I desire.
The funds I am requesting would help cover a portion of the total cost of my Senior Independent Study Thesis Project. I have already bought some materials with my own money and will receive $50.00 in seed money from the Art Department. If the Copeland Fund were unable to assist in covering the cost, I would have to resort to a less effective approach to this meaningful project.
Total Cost $727.20
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