Uncanny doubles

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Uncanny doubles
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Abstract:
Uncanny Doubles explores the Freudian notion of the uncanny through both the distortion of bodily forms and the manipulation of materials to evoke psychological unease. Through a series of paintings and prints, the viewer is confronted by seemingly familiar references to the body floating in and out of odd, mysterious spaces. The seductive surfaces are lush, raw, and uninhibited. However, on closer inspection, the content bares itself to be unnerving at its core. Contorted limbs, organ0like forms, and skeletal structures slowly reveal themselves to the viewer, evoking a sense of the uncanny in relation to death and the dead body. Primal qualities of the imagery further arouse this sensation of the uncanny. There lies a sense of something recognizable yet somehow difficult to discern. In this way, the emerging references to the body function as uncanny doubles. They are manifestations of my own repressed content from earlier stages of life returning in a familiar yet altered state courses throughout the work. The development of the paintings relied heavily on material exploration. Experiments with materials ranging from paint, pen ink, and charcoal to magazine clippings, food products, glues, plant root systems, and even human hair served as a method for teaching me how to create a marriage between my love of materials and the content of my work. My intuitive process depended on this constant play with materials, and so did the development of forms in the work. What is a very specific form in the beginning is constantly shifted between being concealed and revealed through a laborious layering process. By balancing my control and lack of control of the materials, the forms are allowed to emerge in a highly impulsive and yet highly deliberate manner. Ultimately, the surface effects resulting from this process further enhance the content of the work. The forms feel fleshy and skin-like; numb and lethargic; animate yet inanimate; dead yet alive. As the work relishes its own materiality, it serves to both attract and repulse. This project asks a lot of the viewer. It demands time; time to relate one's own physical body to the work as well one's senses and emotions. In this way, the work is permitted to be very open-ended. By exploring my own psyche, I provoke viewers to delve into their own. These are psychological pieces and I want them to play with the mind.
General Note:
Painting and Drawing terminal project

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Full Text





UNCANNY DOUBLES


By

CHESLEY ANN LEWIS





SUPERVISORY COMMITTEE:

JULIA MORRISROE, CHAIR
RON JANOWICH, MEMBER







A PROJECT IN LIEU OF THESIS PRESENTED TO THE COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
MASTER OF FINE ARTS

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

2010


































2010 Chesley Lewis




































To my Dad and my Mom









ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

I thank my supervisory committee chair, Julia Morrisroe, for constantly

challenging me to push this project beyond my own expectations. Her time and input were

invaluable to me and were crucial in developing this body of work. I also thank committee

member, Ron Janowich, for his insight into my work, as he often knows what my work is

conveying before I can articulate it myself. I thank Bob Mueller for his interest in my work,

his continual encouragement, and above all else, his sincerity. Finally, I thank Arnold

Mesches and Jerry Cutler whose input and feedback on my work meant so much to me.









TABLE OF CONTENTS



A C K N O W L E D G M E N T S ..............................................................................................................4

L IS T O F P L A T E S ........................................................................... .................................... . 6

ABSTRACT ........................................................ .......................7

P R O JE C T R E P O R T .......................................................................... ................................... . 9

P L A T E S ............................................................................................................... ..................... 2 0

L IS T O F R E F E R E N C E S ...............................................................................................................3 5

B IO G R A PH IC A L SK E T C H ......................................................................................................... 36





































5









LIST OF PLATES

Plate 1. In Flesh. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas;
4' X 3'.

Plate 2. In Flesh (detail). 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas.

Plate 3. In Vein. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas;
4' X 3'.

Plate 4. In Vein (detail). 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas.

Plate 5. Same Other. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 5' X 4'.

Plate 6. Same Other (detail). 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas.

Plate 7. Know. 2010. Acrylic, pen, and polycrylic on canvas; 5' X 4'.

Plate 8. In Bone. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal
on canvas. 4' X 3'.

Plate 9. Glimpse. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal
on canvas; 5' X 4'.

Plate 10. Parallel no. 1. 2010. Collograph print with mixed media.
41" X 29".

Plate 11. Parallel no. 2. 2010. Collograph print with mixed media.
41" X 29".

Plate 12. Installation shot 1. 2010.

Plate 13. Installation shot 2. 2010.

Plate 14. Installation shot 3. 2010.

Plate 15. Installation shot 4. 2010.









Summary of Project in Lieu of Thesis
Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida
in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the
Degree of Master of Fine Arts

UNCANNY DOUBLES

By

Chesley Ann Lewis

May 2010

Chair: Julia Morrisroe
Major: Art

Uncanny Doubles explores the Freudian notion of the uncanny through both the

distortion of bodily forms and the manipulation of materials to evoke psychological

unease. Through a series of paintings and prints, the viewer is confronted by seemingly

familiar references to the body floating in and out of odd, mysterious spaces. The seductive

surfaces are lush, raw, and uninhibited. However, on closer inspection, the content bares

itself to be unnerving at its core. Contorted limbs, organ-like forms, and skeletal structures

slowly reveal themselves to the viewer; evoking a sense of the uncanny in relation to death

and the dead body. Primal qualities of the imagery further arouse this sensation of the

uncanny. There lies a sense of something recognizable yet somehow difficult to discern. In

this way, the emerging references to the body function as uncanny doubles. They are

manifestations of my own repressed memories surrounding death as well as realizations of

my own mortality. This conception of repressed content from earlier stages of life

returning in a familiar yet altered state courses throughout the work.

The development of the paintings relied heavily on material exploration.

Experiments with materials ranging from paint, pen ink, and charcoal to magazine









clippings, food products, glues, plant root systems, and even human hair served as a

method for teaching me how to create a marriage between my love of materials and the

content of my work. My intuitive process depended on this constant play with materials,

and so did the development of forms in the work. What is a very specific form in the

beginning is constantly shifted between being concealed and revealed through a laborious

layering process. By balancing my control and lack of control of the materials, the forms

are allowed to emerge in a highly impulsive and yet highly deliberate manner. Ultimately,

the surface effects resulting from this process further enhance the content of the work. The

formsfeel fleshy and skin-like; numb and lethargic; animate yet inanimate; dead yet alive.

As the work relishes its own materiality, it serves to both attract and repulse.

This project asks a lot of the viewer. It demands time; time to relate one's own

physical body to the work as well one's senses and emotions. In this way, the work is

permitted to be very open-ended. By exploring my own psyche, I provoke viewers to delve

into their own. These are psychological pieces and I want them to play with the mind.









PROJECT REPORT

Uncanny Doubles revolves around an investigation of the uncanny in terms of the

human body and psyche. Through the manipulation of materials, references to the human

body emerge and serve to evoke unnerving sensations in the viewer. The Freudian notion

of the uncanny permeates the work, as the forms seem familiar yet possess a strangeness

that creates a sense of disquiet and anxiety. There lies a deadness to the imagery as if

existing in a lethargic state between animate and inanimate. Though seductive in their

surfaces, the paintings slowly reveal the darker aspects of their origin.

The Freudian Uncanny and The Double

For there would be a real pleasure in watching it. He would be able to follow
his mind into its secret places. This portrait would be to him the most magical of
mirrors. As it revealed to him his own body, so it would reveal to him his own
soul. -Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray'

The impact of Freud's conception of the uncanny is undeniable in the development

of the paintings in this exhibition. However, I view his ideas not so much as an influence on

the work, but rather as a critical tool used in illuminating its meaning. His direct linkage

between the uncanny and that of something familiar is a key aspect of the imagery and

especially important to the notion of an uncanny double. It is the idea that something which

has been repressed is brought to the realm of consciousness once again in the form of the

double. In this way, the double carries with it a sense of familiarity by triggering one's

unconscious life. However, this familiarity is tainted by oddities and a strangeness; an

unsettling sense of recognition but also unknowingness. In the exhibition, this

unanticipated return of the repressed takes form in visual images pulled from my

memories. These images become the means for evoking an instance of the uncanny. The


1Oscar Wilde, The Works of Oscar Wilde (New York: Walter J. Black, Inc., 1927), 177.

9









emerging forms function as uncanny doubles. They are manifestations of my own

repressed memories involving death.

This sense of the uncanny is often strongly felt in relation to death and the dead

body. In his essay, The Uncanny, Freud at one point links this sense to not only the

gruesomeness of the dead body but, more important, the idea that "the primitive fear of the

dead is still so potent in us and ready to manifest itself if given any encouragement."2 This

innate fear is so basic and primal that it stands the test of time as well as our knowledge of

science; it pervades across cultures. Though these paintings have evolved from very

personal experiences, they too exist on a very primal, universal level. The seemingly

primitive associations to the body evoke the notion of one's own mortality-the very basic

knowledge that one's own body will be dead and the absolute uncertainty of what is to

follow (Plates 10 and 11). Each painting becomes a visual realization of both my

subconscious memories surrounding death and my own impermanence. They are my

uncanny doubles.

Psychoanalysis

The dream was very vivid, and showed me my beloved mother, with a peculiarly
calm, sleeping countenance, carried into the room and laid on my bed by two (or
three) person's with birds' beaks. I awoke crying and screaming and disturbed
my parents' sleep. -Sigmund Freud, The Interpretation of Dreams3

The role of psychoanalysis and the close study of other Freud texts dealing with this

field has been an important component in developing imagery accessible to viewers. In

particular, I focused on Freud's Interpretation of Dreams. The knowledge of distortion in

dreams is something common to most individuals and this fact has served as a sort of

bridge between imagery from my own dream world and imagery others can find relatable.

2Sigmund Freud, The Uncanny, trans. David Mclintock (London, Penguin Books Ltd., 2003), 149.
3Sigmund Freud, The Interpretation of Dreams (Scotts Valley: IAP, 2009) 294.

10









In the conscious world, instances of the uncanny are often scarcely experienced. In the

subconscious dream world, strange forms, mutations, odd encounters, and a distorted sense

of space and time are allowed to dominate.

The realm of the dream world often forces us to repeat painful experiences that

have been a part of our conscious, waking state of mind. Freud links this repeating or

re-enacting of traumatic experiences to the repetition compulsion and the death drive.

According to Freud, we possess a pleasure-seeking drive as well as a death drive. There lies

an inner, unconscious compulsion to repeat; one powerful enough to overrule the

pleasure-seeking drive.4 This compulsion is linked to the death drive, which acts to

counterbalance our desire to do things in which we find pleasure. When speaking to

Freud's formulation of the death drive, author Margaret Iversen states

... it was prompted by the observations that shell-shocked soldiers he treated
during World War I repeatedly dreamt of their traumatic experiences; that his
grandson invented a game that, in fantasy, repeated the painful experience of
separation from his mother; and that people in analysis contrive to repeat as
contemporary experiences childhood events such as the conflicts of Oedipal
scenario and its dissolution. 5

The death drive is thus internal to the psyche and seems to function as an instinct to

destroy. According to this concept, we are driven to return to our pre-organic, inanimate

state.6 Freud links this to his notion of the uncanny when he states, "The foregoing

discussions have all prepared us for the fact that anything that can remind us of this inner

compulsion to repeat is perceived as uncanny."7 In my subconscious dream world I am

reminded of my own compulsion to repeat. In my conscious world, this compulsion



4 Margaret Iversen, Beyond Pleasure: Freud, Lacan, Barthes (University Park: Pennsylvania State
University Press, 2007) 26.
5Iversen, 26.
6Iversen, 26.
Freud, The Uncanny, 145.









manifests itself in my paintings.


Process

What does finally appear on the canvas, in the best of cases, is probably a
mixture between what the painter wanted and... accidents... It seems to me that in
painting, and perhaps also in the other arts, there's always an element of
surprise, and that distinction perhaps comes back to what psychoanalysis has
defined as the conscious and the unconscious.
-Francis Bacon8

Perhaps the most crucial component of this project was the relationship between

process and content. Over the last three years, I constantly engaged in the manipulation of

many different types of materials. By experimenting with materials I had never used

before, I was able to discover a visual vocabulary that slowly revealed what the content of

my work was becoming. My embracement of the Greenbergian9emphasis on formalism

was not abandoned by any means; rather, I began bringing other elements into the equation

such as figuration and various types of space. I no longer restricted myself to the use of

only paint and canvas. My own perception of what constitutes painting began to shift as I

began working with materials such as glues, dead plant roots, human hair, food products,

polyurethane, and magazine clippings. The inherent "grossness" of many of these

materials in relation to the human body intrigued me and a strong attraction/repulsion

dynamic became consistently present in the work. Because the uncanny is frequently

intertwined with this attraction/repulsion dynamic, the surfaces of my paintings are

completely and utterly bound to the content of the work.

8John G. Hatch, "Fatum as Theme and Method in the Work of Francis Bacon," Artibus et Historiae,
Vol. 19, No. 37 (1998) : 167-169.
9Clement Greenberg was an extremely influential American art critic who championed modem art,
particularly abstract expressionism. One of his most significant essays, ModernistFl,,in ,,'. conveyed his
emphasis on the formal qualities of painting (color, plane, line, surface qualities, and the push/pull of flat
shapes). According to Greenberg, painting should emphasize above all else the qualities unique to its
medium, especially the flatness of the picture plane; Clement Greenberg The Collected Essays and Criticism,
Volume 4: Modernism with a Vengeance, ed. John 0' Brian, vol. 4, Modernist FTlm,, i (Chicago: The
University of Chicago Press, 1993), 85-93.









This experimentation with these types of materials evolved into an interest in the

disturbing physical qualities of the human body; more specifically, a study of the abject.

Julia Kristeva refers to the abject as something that causes us to feel threatened or horrified

because it blurs the line between self and other. 10 For example, a corpse becomes repulsive

as it reminds of us of our own materiality. To recognize a corpse as human, as something

that should be alive but is not, forces one to confront the reality of their own body existing

in that state. It is a realization of one's own mortality. Similar to this repulsion from death

is the repulsion from excrements of the body, open wounds, sewage, and rot; all of which

serve as examples of the abj ect. The strong link between the quality of the abj ect and that of

the uncanny is highlighted by Kristeva:

A massive and sudden emergence of uncanniness, which, familiar as it
might have been in an opaque and forgotten life, now harries me as
radically separate, loathsome. Not me. Not that. But not nothing, either.
A 'something' that I do not recognize as a thing. A weight of
meaninglessness, about which there is nothing insignificant, and which
crushes me. On the edge of non-existence and hallucination, of a reality
that, if I acknowledge it, annihilates me. There, abject and abjection are my
safeguards. The primers of my culture.11

As I explored the concept of the abject, learning to not overly relish the materials

and instead using them in a way that enriched the content was a continual challenge. The

paintings in Uncanny Doubles were created with acrylic paint, pen ink, polycryclic, and

charcoal. I developed a method of combining these materials in a way that causes them to

imply fleshiness, decay, a sense of the body, and bodily fluids (Plate 1). Through an

intensive layering process, I discovered a balance between the matte and glossy surfaces

which served as a way of building up odd, dreamlike spaces for the emerging forms to float



10Julia Kristeva, Powers of Horror: An Essay on Abjection, trans. Leon S. Roudiez (New York:
Columbia University Press, 1982).
11Kristeva, 2.









within (Plate 3). While this layering process is extremely intuitive at times, allowing the

surfaces and images to evolve fluidly, it is highly deliberate as well. There lies a balance

between my control and lack of control of the materials that developed and strengthened

over the course of the project.

Learning how the materials reacted with one another allowed me to make specific

choices in how I used them in the development of the imagery. In this way, facture

becomes an important aspect of the paintings.12 Letting the materials guide my hand and

making my hand guide the materials becomes a dance of sorts on the canvas. I possess a

unique ownership of the materials that came about only through experimentation and time.

Facture is an end result in the work-a total combination of all the relationships that took

place between chance and willed mark-making. The paintings reveal this ever-present

belief in the power and beauty of the painting process that is critical to my practice. By

embracing this materiality in the work, I used it to the advantage of the content. The raw,

uninhibited surfaces become compelling in both their attractiveness and repulsiveness

(Plates 2 and 4).

Throughout the earliest stages of this project, the work contained more specific

human forms, such as distorted, sickly limbs and hands. Other pieces shifted into being

more abstract, containing an implied reference to human organs, body parts, and fluids. As

I explored both ends of this spectrum, I was able to identify the imagery that best

communicated the content to the viewer. By implying a sense of fleshiness and skin, bone

and skeletal structure, organ-like forms and contorted limbs, a deadened sense of

movement is conveyed that is often associated with the uncanny (Plate 1). Dismembered

12"Facture" is defined in Webster's Dictionary as "the act, process or manner of making something."
More specifically, it refers to an artist's handling of materials in their work-where the hand of the artist
meets the work.









from an actual body, these bodily associations manage to suggest independent activity

wherein they teeter on the edge of being animate or inanimate. The forms seem insensate,

numb, lethargic, and dead; yet their biomorphic nature allows them to appear to be

morphing into something human-like or non-human. An uncanny aura is heightened as the

forms appear to become something else (Plate 5).

The exploration into the abject aspects of the body eventually merged with a more

psychological investigation of the disturbing. I was interested in treading the line of the

instant an image becomes unsettling-similar to the moment you realize something is

wrong or slightly off, in a dream. Freud describes the sensation of the uncanny as

something that often "recalls the helplessness we experience in certain dream-states." 13

create a similar experience in my work when the viewer becomes vulnerably seduced by

the lush surfaces of a painting and then slowly discovers a darker content at its core (Plate

7). By reviewing my own written dream journals from the past, I was able to pinpoint

instances of the uncanny and build a visual vocabulary based on them. However, rather

than revealing the specific narratives of my dream world, the paintings instead encapsulate

how I felt. Dreams are real in the sense that we do feel emotions and sensations in them; our

mind is simply in a subconscious state rather than in the conscious world. The paintings

evoke these sensations and emotions through the language of visual images, much in the

same way a dream does. By repeatedly shifting back and forth between concealing the

forms and allowing certain elements to be revealed, a more emotive, sensorial, and sensual

result has been achieved (Plate 8). Viewers of this exhibition are given the opportunity to

perhaps discover their own uncanny double within the work-a piece of their own

subconscious life that makes an unanticipated return.

"Freud, The Uncanny, 144.









Influences

we are born and we die, but in between we give this purposeless existence
a meaning by our drives. -Francis Bacon14

Along with research into specific texts, my project was also influenced by research

into artists whose work exists in similar realms. The work of the Abstract Expressionists

played a key role in the development of my own artistic language and practice. In

particular, I have always been motivated by the work of the color-field painters, Mark

Rothko and Jules Olitski. Their concern with the viewer's experience as they stand before a

painting is something I too place a great deal of emphasis on. They allow for a profound

connection to occur between the painting and the viewer; or, as Mark Rothko put it so

eloquently, "A painting is not about experience. It is an experience."15 Color in both

Rothko and Olitski's work holds this power to create an experience, often being one of

poignant silence. The roots of this project are bound in similar explorations into the

psychological use of color and its ability to deeply affect one's emotions. In my earlier

work, forms were entirely absent from the compositions, which instead comprised thinly

layered veils of color. The surface qualities so dominant in these color-fields remained an

area of emphasis throughout my project as well.

As my interest in form arose, so too did my interest in the predecessor of Abstract

Expressionism: Surrealism. I have been especially interested in the work of Joan Miro and

his use of dynamic tension between different types of space. Mixtures of flat, surface forms

with deep, atmospheric space make up many of his mysterious worlds. This quality began

to be present in my work as I too found myself attempting to unite unconscious, fantasy

realms with the conscious realm of reality. Miro's "Automatic Drawings" and "Dream

14Hatch, 173.
15Jacob Baal-Teshuva, Mark Rothko: Pictures as Drama (Germany: TASCHEN, 2003), 57.

16









Paintings" possess an improvisational quality akin to free association that relates in many

ways to Freud's notions of the unconscious and repression. The forms in my work come

about in this way also; a series of continuous reactions to marks allowed to pour out of me

when I overcome conscious thought. Miro states

I was drawing almost entirely from hallucinations. At the time I was living
on a few dried figs a day. I was too proud to ask my colleagues for help.
Hunger was a great source of these hallucinations. I would sit for long
periods looking at the bare walls of my studio trying to capture these
shapes on paper or burlap.16

Achieving some altered state of mind is something that often occurred as I worked on this

project. I found, out of very long periods of time and pure frustration, I would often reach a

point where I was no longer a slave to thinking. Becoming frustrated as I tried to create

forms always led me to a point where my mind gave in to impulse. It was only here that my

forms were then allowed to evolve freely and intuitively from my unconscious.

Without question, the most profound artistic influence on this project was my

research into the work of Francis Bacon. A dark, elusive quality compels me to return to it

again and again; a kind of mystery I take pleasure in being unable to solve. In this project,

I strive for this sensibility. I create cryptic worlds on the canvas that elude rational

dissection. Additionally, Bacon's content and process are inextricably linked in ways that

mirror my own relationship to art making. When speaking to Bacon's intuitive painting

process, John G. Hatch said

There is, though, an element of control at work in this process which
relates to Bacon's characterization of the interaction between will and
accident as one between the conscious and unconscious. The artist
does not simply take all the chance marks produced, but only interacts
with those which in a very Freudian sense are uncanny.17


16David Lomas, The Haunted Self (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2000), 12.
"Hatch, 169.









Bacon's connection between the conscious/unconscious and the will/accident dynamic

enabled me to look for the more "chance-based" areas in my compositions that possessed a

sense of the uncanny. I then consciously worked to emphasize those aspects (Plate 9). In

this way, a constant dialogue exists between my conscious and unconscious; the final result

being an image of this internal conversation.

Aesthetics of Anxiety

I want very, very much to do the thing that Valery said- to give the sensation
without the boredom of its conveyance.
-Francis Bacon18

As the concept of the double is susceptible to such broad interpretation, the imagery

I created is similarly open-ended. However, discovering a way to bring personal, sincere

content to the level of the universal was a challenging aspect of this project. Each

individual's emotional range and ability to explore their inner psychology is a variable I

was forced to consider; as well as the knowledge that the sensitivity to the feeling of the

uncanny can vary greatly from one individual to the next. That which creates a sense of

unknowingness, unease, or anxiety in one individual may not in another. Because of this,

the ,i-,-,eiiin of the body becomes a crucial element of the paintings. It permits the work

to be more open to personal interpretations; allowing the viewer to form connections to the

bodily references (Plate 7). In this way, there is an ever-present mystery about the

paintings. One walks away with questions rather than knowing all of the answers.

Conclusion

As a theorist, Freud is obviously a great thinker, but I keep going back to him
again and again because of the beautiful quality of his writing. He is always
rooting things back in the world, back into family relationships, back into object
relationships...... As a person who works with materials, I appreciate how Freud,
even when he gets way out there with his ideas about the 'primal horde,' creates

18Hatckh 164.









an elaborate mythology that he still attempts to link to daily life. And beyond that,
I find so much of his work resonates with my own experience.
-Mike Kelley19

This project was truly a cathartic experience. Through the creation of this work, I

was able to examine my own psyche as well as provoke viewers to delve into their own.

Research into Freud's ideas surrounding the uncanny and the double was an invaluable tool

in analyzing the content of my own work. References to the body in this series of paintings

tap into the uncanny nature of the corporeal facets of the body and also into the uncanny

nature of the fear of death Freud refers to.

The relationship between process and content is something I embrace in this work

above all else. I view the conversation between my control and lack of control of the

materials as mirroring the conversation between my conscious and unconscious. Acts of

serendipity on the canvas provide each painting with a life of its own; an element of

mystery that essentially becomes the content of the work. This enigmatic quality leaves

viewers with a feeling they may never be able to fully identify-a sensation of the

uncanny.


















19Mike Kelley, "I've Got This Strange Feeling: Mike Kelley and Jeffrey Sconce on The Uncanny,"
interview by Jeffrey Sconce, Tate Etc.: Europe's Largest Art Magazine, Issue 1 (Summer 2004).

19






















































Plate 1. Chesley Lewis. In Flesh. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas;
4' X 3'.










































esley Lewis. In b


ail). 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charc(


Plate 2. (
canvas.




























































-riaie _. Lnesiey Lewis. inf vein. zuiu. Acrync, pen, polycrylic, ana cnarcoai on canvas;
4' X 3'.












































Plate 4. Chesley Lewis. In Vein (detail). 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic,
And charcoal on canvas.























































Plate 5. Chesley Lewis. Same Other. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on
canvas; 5' X 4'.









































esley Lewis. Same C


(detail). 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal


Plate 6. Ch
on canvas.




































































ite /. knesiey Lewis. KAnow. Zuiu. Acrl


c, pen, anu poiycryiic on canvas,; A 4 .





















































Plate 8. Chesley Lewis. In Bone. 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal
on canvas. 4' X 3'.











27


















































Plate v. Lnesley Lewis. tulmpse. 2UIU. Acrylic, pen, poiycryiic, ana charcoal
on canvas; 5' X 4'.
























































&k


Plate 10. (hesley Lewis. Parallel no. 1. 2010. (ollograph print with mixed media.
41" X 29".



























































Plate 11. Chesley Lewis. Parallel no. 2. 2010. Collograph print with mixed media.
41" X 29".






30






































Plate 12. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 1. 2010.






































Plate 13. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 2. 2010.






































Plate 14. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 3. 2010.




























Plate 15. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 4. 2010.









LIST OF REFERENCES

Baal-Teshuva, Jacob. Mark Rothko: Pictures as Drama. Germany: TASCHEN, 2003.

Freud, Sigmund. The Interpretation of Dreams. Scotts Valley: IAP, 2009.

Freud, Sigmund. The Uncanny. Translated by David Mclintock. London: Penguin Books
Ltd., 2003.

Greenberg, Clement. Clement Greenberg The Collected Essays and Criticism, Volume 4:
Modernism i ith a Vengeance. Edited by John 0' Brian. Vol. 4, Modernist
Painting. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1993.

Hatch, John G. "Fatum as Theme and Method in the Work of Francis Bacon." Artibus et
Historiae Vol. 19 No. 37 (1998): 163-175.

Iversen, Margaret. Beyond Pleasure: Freud, Lacan, B, t whe%. University Park:
Pennsylvania State University Press, 2007.

Kelley, Mike. "I've Got This Strange Feeling: Mike Kelley and Jeffrey Sconce on The
Uncanny." Interview by Jeffrey Sconce. Tate Etc.: Europe's Largest Art
Magazine, Issue 1 (Summer 2004).

Kristeva, Julia. Powers of Horror: An Essay on Abjection. Translated by Leon S. Roudiez.
New York: Columbia University Press, 1982.

Lomas, David. The Haunted Self. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2000.

Wilde, Oscar. The Works of Oscar Wilde. New York: Walter J. Black, Inc., 1927.









BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

Chesley Lewis was born and raised in Panama City Beach, Florida. Upon

graduating high school as salutatorian, she attended Auburn University. Chesley then

transferred to the University of West Florida (Pensacola), where she received her BFA

with a minor in philosophy in 2007. In fall 2007, she entered the graduate program at the

University of Florida (Gainesville), where she received her MFA in 2010.




Full Text

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1 UNCANNY DOUBLES By CHESLEY ANN LEWIS SUPERVISORY COMMITTEE: JULIA MORRISROE, CHAIR RON JANOWICH, MEMBER A PROJECT IN LIEU OF THESIS PRESENTED TO THE COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF FINE ARTS UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2010

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2 2010 Chesley Lewis

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3 To my Dad and my Mom

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I thank my supervisory committee chair Julia Morrisroe, for constantly cha llenging me to push this project beyond my own expectations. Her time and input were invaluabl e to me and were crucial in developing this body of work. I also thank committee member, Ron Janowich, for his insight into my work, as he often know s what my work is conveying before I can articulate it myself I thank Bob Mueller for his interest in my work his continual encouragement, and above all else, his sincerity. Finally, I thank Arnold Mesches and Jerry Cutler whose i nput and feedback on my work meant so much to me.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ............................................................................................................... 4 LIST OF PLATES ........................................................................................................................... 6 ABSTRACT ..................................................................................................................................... 7 PROJECT REPORT ........................................................................................................................ 9 PLATES ......................................................................................................................................... 20 LIST OF REFERENCES ............................................................................................................... 35 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ......................................................................................................... 36

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6 LIST OF PLATES Plate 1. In Flesh 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 4 X 3. Plate 2. In Flesh (detail) 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas. Plate 3. In Vein 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 4 X 3. Plate 4. In Vein (detail) 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas. Plate 5. Same Other 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 5 X 4. Plate 6. Same Other (detail) 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas. Plate 7. Know 2010. Acrylic, pen, and polycrylic on canvas; 5 X 4. Plate 8. In Bone 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas. 4 X 3. Plate 9. Glimpse 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 5 X 4. Plate 10. Parallel no. 1. 2010. Collograph print with mixed media. 41 X 29. Plate 11. Parallel no. 2. 2010. Collograph print with mix ed media. 41 X 29. Plate 12. Installation shot 1. 2010. Plate 13. Installation shot 2. 2010. Plate 14. Installation shot 3. 2010. Plate 15. Installation shot 4. 2010.

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7 Summary of Project in Lieu of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Fine Arts UNCANNY DOUBLES By Chesley Ann Lewis May 2010 Chair: Julia Morrisroe Major: Art Uncanny Doubles explores the Freudian notion of the uncanny through both the distortion of bodily forms and the manipulation of materials to evoke psychological unease. Through a series of paintings and prints, the viewer is confronted by seemingly familiar references to the body floating in and out of odd, mysterious spaces. The seductive surfaces are lush, raw, and uninhibited. However, on closer inspection, the content bares itself to be unnerving at its core. Contorted limbs, organlike forms, and skeletal structures slowly reveal themselves to the viewer; evoking a sense of the uncanny in relation to death and the dead body. Primal qualities of the imagery further arouse this sensation of the uncanny. There lies a sense of something recognizable yet somehow difficult to discern. In this way, the emerging references to the body function as uncanny doubles. They are manifestations of my own repressed memories surrounding death as well as realizations of my own mortality. This conception of repressed content from earlier stages of life returning in a familiar yet altered state courses throughout the work. The development of the paintings relied heavily on material exploration. Experiments with materials ranging from paint, pen ink, and charcoal to magazine

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8 clippings, food products, glues, plant root systems, and even human hair served as a method for teaching me how to create a marriage between my love of materials and the content of my work. My intuitive process depended on this constant play with materials, and so did t he development of forms in the work. What is a very specific form in the beginning is constantly shifted between being concealed and revealed through a laborious layering process. By balancing my control and lack of control of the materials, the forms are allowed to emerge in a highly impulsive and yet highly deliberate manner. Ultimately, the surface effects resulting from this process further enhance the content of the work. The forms feel fleshy and skinlike; numb and lethargic; animate yet inanimate; d ead yet alive. As the work relishes its own materiality, it serves to both attract and repulse. This project asks a lot of the viewer. It demands time; time to relate ones own physical body to the work as well ones senses and emotions. In this way, the work is permitted to be very open ended. By exploring my own psyche, I provoke viewers to delve into their own. These are psychological pieces and I want them to play with the mind.

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9 PROJECT REPORT Uncanny Doubles revolves around an investigation of the uncanny in terms of the human body and psyche. Through the manipulation of materials, references to the human body emerge and serve to evoke unnerving sensations in t he viewer. The Freudian notion of the uncanny per meates the work as the forms seem familiar yet possess a strangeness that creates a sense of dis quiet and anxiety. There lies a deadness to the imagery as if existing in a lethargic state between animate and inanimate. Though seductive in their surfaces, the paintings slowly reveal the darker aspects of their origin. The Freudian Uncanny and The Double For there would be a real pleasure in watching it. He would be able to follow his mind into its secret places. This portrait would be to him the most mag ical of mirrors. As it revealed to him his own body, so it would reveal to him his own soul. Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray1The impact of Freuds conception of the uncanny is undeniable in the development of the paintings in this exhibition. However, I view his ideas not so much as an influence on the work, but rather as a critical tool used in illuminating its meaning. His direct linkage between the uncanny and that of something familiar is a key aspect of the i magery and especially important to the notion of an uncanny double. It is the idea that something which has been repressed is brought to the realm of consciousness once again in the form of the double In this way, the double carries with it a sense of fam iliarity by triggering ones unconscious life. However, this familiarity is tainted by oddities and a strangeness; an unsettling sense of recognition but also unknowingness. In the exhibition, this unanticipated return of the repressed takes form in visual imag es pulled from my memor ies. T hese images become the means for evoking an instance of the uncanny. The 1Oscar Wilde, The Works of Oscar Wilde (New York: Walter J. Black, Inc., 1927) 177.

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10 emerging forms function as uncanny doubles. They are manifestations of my own repressed memories involving death. This sense of the uncanny is often strongly felt in relation to death and the dead body. In his essay, The Uncanny Freud at one point links this sense to not only the gruesomeness of the dead body but more important, the idea that the primitive fea r of the dead is still so potent in us and ready to manifest itself if given any encouragement. 2Psychoanalysis This innate fear is so basic and primal tha t it stands the test of time as well as our knowledge of sc ience; it pervades across cultures. Though these paintings have evolved from very personal expe riences, they too exist on a very primal, universal level. The seemingly primitive associations to the body evoke the notion of ones own mortality the very basic knowledge that ones own body will be dead and the absolute unc ertainty of what is to follow (P late s 10 and 11). Each painting beco mes a visual realization of both my subconscious memories surrounding death and my own impermanence. They are my uncanny doubles. The dream was very vivid, and showed me my beloved mother, with a pecul iarly calm, sleeping countenance, carried into the room and laid on my bed by two (or three) persons with birds beaks. I awoke cry ing and screaming and disturbed my parents sleep. Sigmund Freud, The Interpretation of Dreams3 The role of psychoanalysis and the close study of other Freud texts dealing with this field has been an important compone nt in developing imagery accessible to viewers. In particular I focused on Freuds Interpretation of Dreams The knowledge of distortion in dreams is something common to most individuals and this fact has served as a sort of bridge between imagery from my own dream world and imagery others can find relatable. 2Sigmund Freud, The Uncanny trans. David Mclintock (London, Penguin Books Ltd., 2003) 149. 3Sigmund Freud, The Interpretation of Dreams (Scotts Valley: IAP, 2009) 294.

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11 In the conscious world, instances of the uncanny are often s carcely experienced. In the subconscious dream world, strange forms, mutations, odd encounters, and a distorted sense of space and time are allowed to dominate. The realm of the dream world often forces us to repeat painful experiences that have been a part of our conscious, waking state of mind. Freud links this repeating or re enacting of traumatic experiences to the repetition compulsion and the death drive. According to Freud, we possess a pleasureseeking drive as well as a death drive. There lies an inner, unconscious compulsion to repeat ; one powerful enough to overrule the pleasureseeking drive.4. it was prompted by the observations that she llshocked soldiers he treated during World War I repeatedly dreamt of their traumatic experiences; that his grandson invented a game that, in fantasy, repeated the painful experience of separation from his mother; and that people in analysis contrive to repeat as contemporary experiences childhood events such as the conflicts of Oedipal scenario and its dissolution. This compulsion is linked to the death drive which acts to counterbalance our desire to do things in which we find pleasure. When speaking to Freuds formulation of the death drive, author Margaret Iversen states 5 The death drive is thus internal to the psyche and seems to function as an instinct to destroy. According to this concept, we are driven to return to our pre organic, inanimate state.6 Fr eud links this to his notion of the uncanny when he states, The foregoing discussio ns have all prepared us for the fact that anything that can remind us of this inner compulsion to repeat is perceived as uncanny.7 4 Margaret Iversen, Beyond Pleasure: Freud, Lacan, Barthes (University Park: Pennsylvania State I n my subconscious dream world I am reminded of my own compulsion to repeat In my conscious world, this compulsion University Press, 2007) 26. 5Iversen, 26. 6Iversen, 26. 7Freud, The Uncanny 145.

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12 manifests itself in my paintings. Process What does finally appear on the canvas, in the best of cases, is probably a mixture between what the painter wanted andaccidentsIt seems to me that in painting, and perhaps also in the other arts, theres always an element of surprise, and that distinction perhaps comes back to what psychoanalysis has defined as the conscious and the unconscious. Francis Bacon8 Perhaps the most crucial co mponent of this project was the relationship betwee n process and content. O ver the last three years, I constantly engaged in the manipulation of many different types of materials. By experimenting with materials I had never used before, I was able to discover a visual vocabulary that slowly revealed what t he content of my work was becoming. My embracement of the Greenbergian9 8John G. Hatch, Fatum as Theme and Method in the Work of Francis Bacon, Artibus et Historiae, Vol. 19, No. 37 (1998) : 167169. emphasis on formalism was not abandoned by any means; rather, I began bringing other elements into the equation such as figuration and various types of space. I no longer restricted myself to the use of only paint and canvas. M y own perception of what constitutes painting began to shift as I began working with materials such as glues, dead plant roots, human hair, food products, polyurethane, and magazine clipp ings. The inherent grossness of many of these materials in relation to the human body int rigued me and a strong attraction/repulsion dynamic became co nsistently present in the work. Because the uncanny is frequently intertwined with this attraction /repul sion dynamic the surfaces of my paintings are completely and utterly bound to the content of the work. 9Clement Greenberg was an extremely influential American art critic who championed mod ern art, particularly abstract expressionism. One of his most significant essays, Modernist Painting, conveyed his emphasis on the formal qualities of painting (color, plane, line, surface qualities, and the push/pull of flat shapes). According to Greenber g, painting should emphasize above all else the qualities unique to its medium, especially the flatness of the picture plane; Clement Greenberg The Collected Essays and Criticism, Volume 4: Modernism with a Vengeanc e ed. John O Brian, vol. 4, Modernist P ainting (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1993) 8593.

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13 This e xperimentation with these types of materia ls evolved into an interest in the disturbing physical qualities of the human body; more spec ifical ly, a s tudy of the abject Julia Kristeva refers to the abject as something that causes us to feel threatened or horrified because it blurs the line between self and other.10A massive and sudden emergence of uncanniness, which, familiar as it For example, a corpse becomes repulsive as it reminds of us of our own materiality. To recognize a corpse as human, as something that should be alive but is not, forces one to confront the reality of their own body existing in that state. It is a realization of ones own mortality. Similar to this repulsion from death is the repulsion from excrements of the body, open wounds, sewage, and rot; all of which serve as examples of the abject. The strong link between the quality of the abject and that of the uncanny is highlighted by Kristeva : m ight have been in an opaque and forgotten life, now harries me as r adically separate, loathsome. Not me. Not that. But not nothing, either. A something that I do not recognize as a thing. A weight of m eaninglessness, about which there i s nothing insignificant, and which c rushes me. On the edge of nonexistence and hallucination, of a reality t hat, if I acknowledge it, annihilates me. There, abject and abjection are my safeguards. The primers of my culture.11 A s I explored the concept of the abject, learning to not overly relish the materials and instead using them in a wa y that enriched the content was a continual challenge. The paintings in Uncanny Doubles were created with acrylic paint, pen ink, polycryclic, and charcoal. I developed a method of combining these materials in a way that causes them to imply fleshiness, decay, a sense of the body, and bodily fluids (P late 1). Through a n intensive layering pr ocess I discovered a balance between t he matte and glossy surfaces which served as a way of building up odd, dreamlike spaces for the emerging forms to float 10Julia Kristeva, Powers of Horror: An Essay on Abjection, trans. Leon S. Roudiez (New York: Columbia University Press, 1982). 11Kristeva, 2.

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14 within (P late 3). While this layering process is extremely intuitive at times, allowing the surfa ces and images to evolve fluidly, it is highly deliberate as well. There lies a balance between my control and lack of control of the materials that devel oped and strengthened over the course of the project. Learning how the materials reacted with one another allowed me to make specific choices in how I used them in the development of the imagery In this way, facture becomes an important aspect of the paintings.12 Throughout the earliest stages of this project, the work contained more specific human forms such as di storted, sickly limbs and hands. O ther pieces shifted into being more abstract, containing an implied reference to human organs, body parts, and fluids. As I explored both ends of this spectrum, I was able to identify the imagery that best communicated the content to the viewer. By implying a sense o f fleshiness and skin, bone a nd skeletal structure organ like forms and contorted limbs a deadened sense of movement is conveyed that is often associated with the uncanny (P late 1). Dismembered Letting the material s guide my hand and making my hand guide the materials becomes a dance of sorts on the canvas. I possess a unique ownership of the materia ls that came about only through experimentation and time. Factur e is an end result in the worka total combination of all the relationships that took place between chance and willed mark making. The paintings reve al this ever present belief in t he power and be auty of t he painting process that is critical to my practice. By embracing this materiality in the work, I use d it to the advantage of the content. The raw, uni nhibited surfaces become compelling in both their a ttractiv eness and repulsiveness (P lates 2 and 4 ). 12Facture is defined in Websters Dictionary as the act, process or manner of making something. More specifically, it refers to an artists handling of materials in their work where the hand of the artist meets the work.

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15 from an actual body, these bodily associations manage to sug gest independent activity wherein they teeter on the edge of being animate or inanimate. The forms seem insensate, numb, lethargic, and dead; yet t heir biomorphic na ture allows them to appear to be morphing into something humanlike or nonhuman. An uncann y aura is heightened as the forms appear to become something else (P late 5 ). T he exploration into the abject aspects of the body eventually merged with a more psychological investigation of the disturbing. I was interested in treading the lin e of the instant an image becomes unsettling similar to the moment you realize something is wrong or slightly off in a dream. Freud describes the sensation of the uncanny as something that often recalls the helplessness we experience in certain dream states.13 13Freud, The Uncanny, 144. I create a similar experience in my work when the viewer becomes vulnerably seduced by the lush surfaces of a painting and then slowly discovers a dark er content at its core (P late 7). By reviewing my own written dream journals from the past, I was able to pinpoint instances of the uncanny and build a visual vocabulary based on them. However, rather than revealing the specific narratives of my dream world, the paintings instead encapsulate how I felt. Dreams are real in the sense that we do feel emotions and sensations in them; our mind is simply in a sub conscious stat e rather than in the conscious world. The paintings evoke these sensation s and emotion s through the language of visual images, much in the same way a dream does. By repeatedly shifting back and forth between concealing the for ms and allowing certain elements to be revealed a more emotive, sensorial, and sensual r esult has been achieved (P late 8 ). Viewers of this exhibition are given the opportunity to perhaps discov er their own uncanny double within the worka piece of their own subconscious life that makes an unanticipated return.

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16 Influences we are born and we die, but in between we give this purposeless existence a meaning by our drives. Franc is Bacon14 Alon g with re search into specific texts, my project was also influenced by research int o artists whose work exists in similar realms. The work of the Abstract Expressionists played a key role in the development of my own artistic language and practice. In part icular, I have always been motivated by the work of the color field painters, Mark Rothko and Jules Olitski. Their concern with the viewers experience as they stand before a painting is something I too place a great deal of emphasis on. They allow for a profound connection to occur between the painting and the viewer ; or, as Mark Rothko put it so eloquently A painting is not about experience. It is an experience.15 As my interest in form arose, so too did my interest in the predec essor of A bstract Expressionism: Surrealism. I have been especially interested in the work of Joan Miro and his use of dynamic tension between different types of space. Mixtures of flat, surface forms with deep, atmospheric space make up many of his mysterious worlds. This quality began to be present in my work as I too found myself attempting to unite unconscious, fantasy realms with the c onscious realm of reality. Miros Automatic Drawings and Dream Color in both Rothko and Olitskis work holds this power to create an e xperience, often being one of poignant silence. The root s of this project are bound in similar explorations into the psychological use of color and its ability to deeply affect ones emotions. In my earlier work, forms were entirely absent from the composi tions which instead comprised thinly l ayered veils of color The surface qualities so dominant in these color fields remained an area of emphasis throug hout my project as well. 14Hatch, 173. 15Jacob Baal Teshuva, Mark Rothko: Pictures as Drama (Germany: TASCHEN, 2003) 57.

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17 Paintings possess an improvisational quality akin to free association that relate s in many ways to Freuds notions of the unconscious and repression. The forms in my wor k come about in this way also; a series of contin uous reactions to marks allowed to pour out of me wh en I overcome conscious thought Miro states I w as drawing almost entirely from hallucinations. At the time I was living on a few dried figs a day. I was too proud to ask my colleagues for help. Hunger was a great source of these hallucinations. I would sit for long periods looking at the bare walls of my studio trying to capture these shapes on paper or burlap.16 Achieving some altered state of mind is something that often occur red as I worked on this project. I found, out of very long periods of time and pure frus tration I would often reach a point where I was no longer a slave to thinking. Becoming frustrated as I tried to create forms always led me to a point where my mind gave in to impulse. It was only here that my forms were then allowed to evolve freely and intuitively from my unconscious. Without question, the most profound artistic influence on this project was my research into the work of Francis Bacon. A dark, elusive quality compels me to return to it again a nd again; a kind of mystery I take pleasure in being unable to solve. In this project, I strive for this sensibility. I create cry ptic worlds on the canvas that elude rational dissection Additionally, Bacons content and process are inextricably linked in ways that mirror my own relationship to art making When speaking to Bacons intuitive painting process, John G. Hatch said There is, though, an element of control at work in this process which relates to Bacons characterization of the interaction between will and accident as one between the co nscious and unconscious. The artist does not simply take all the chance marks produced, but only interacts with those which in a very Freudian sense are uncanny .17 16David Lomas, The Haunted Self (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2000) 12. 17Hatch, 169.

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18 Bacons connection between the conscious/unconscious and the will/accident dynamic enabled me to look for the more chancebased areas in my compositions that possess ed a sense of the uncanny I then consciously work ed to emphasize those aspects (P late 9). In this way, a constant dialogue exists between my conscious and unconscious; the final r esult being an image of this internal conversation. Aesthetics of Anxiety I want very, very much to do the thing that Valery saidto give the sensation without the boredom of its conveyance. Francis Bacon18 As the concept of the double is susceptible to such broad interpretation, the imagery I created is similarly open ended. However, discovering a way to bring personal, sincere content to the level of the universal was a challenging aspect of this project. E ach individuals emotional r ange and ability to explore their inner psychology is a variable I was forced to consider; as well as the knowledge that the sensitivity to the fe eling of the uncanny can vary greatl y from one individual to the next. That which creates a sense of unknowing ness, unease, or anxiety in one individual may not in another. Because of this, the suggestion of the body becomes a crucial element of the paintings It permits th e work to be more open to personal interpretations ; allowing t he viewer to form connections to the bodily references (P late 7 ). In this way, there is an ever present mystery about the paintings. One walks away with questions rather than knowing all of the answers. Conclusion As a theorist Freud is obviously a great thinker but I keep going back to him again and again because of the beautiful quality of his writing. He is always rooting things back in the world, back into family relationships, back into object relationshipsAs a person who works with materials, I appr eciate how Freud, even when he gets way out there with his ideas about the primal horde, creates 18Hatch, 164.

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19 an elaborate mythology that he still attempts to link to daily life. And beyond that, I find so much of his work re sonates with my own experience. Mike Kelley19 This project was truly a cathartic experience. Through the creation of this work, I was able to examine my own psyche as well as provoke viewers to delve into their own. Research into Freuds ideas surrounding the uncanny and the double was an inv aluable tool in analyzing the content of my own work. R eferences to the body in this series of paintings tap into the uncanny nature of the corporeal facets of the body and also into the uncanny nature of the fear of death Freud refers to The relationship between process and content is something I embrace in this work above all else. I view the conversation between my control and lack of control of the materials as mirroring the conversation between my conscious and unconscious. Acts of ser endipity on the canvas provide each painting with a life of its own; an element of mystery that essentially becomes the content of the work. This enigmatic quality le aves viewers with a feeling they may never be able to fully identify a sensation of the uncanny. 19Mike Kelley, Ive Got This Strange Feeling: Mike Kelley and Jeffrey Sconce on The Uncanny inte rview by Jeffrey Sconce, Tate Etc.: Europes Largest Art Magazine Issue 1 (Summer 2004).

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20 Plate 1. Chesley Lewis. In Flesh 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 4 X 3.

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21 Plate 2. Chesley Lewis. In Flesh (detail) 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas.

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22 Plate 3. Chesley Lewis. In Vein 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 4 X 3.

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23 Plate 4. Chesley Lewis. In Vein (detail) 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, And charcoal on canvas.

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24 Plate 5 Chesley Lewis. Same Other 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 5 X 4.

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25 Plate 6 Chesley Lewis. Same Other (detail) 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas.

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26 Plate 7 Chesley Lewis. Know 2010. Acrylic, pen, and polycrylic on canvas; 5 X 4.

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27 Plate 8 Chesley Lewis. In Bone 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas. 4 X 3.

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28 Plate 9 Chesley Lewis. Glimpse 2010. Acrylic, pen, polycrylic, and charcoal on canvas; 5 X 4.

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29 Plate 10 Chesley Lewis. Parallel no. 1. 2010. Collograph print with mixed media. 41 X 29.

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30 Plate 11 Chesley Lewis. Parallel no. 2. 2010. Collograph print with mixed media. 41 X 29.

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31 Plate 12. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 1. 2010.

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32 Plate 1 3. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 2. 2010.

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33 Plate 14. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 3. 2010.

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34 Plate 1 5. Chesley Lewis. Installation shot 4. 2010.

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35 LIST OF REFERENCES Baal Teshuva, Jacob. Mark Rothko: Pictures as Drama. Germany: TASCHEN, 2003. Freud, Sigmund. The Interpretation of Dreams Scotts Valley: IAP, 2009. Freud, Sigmund. The Uncanny Translated by David Mclintock. London: Penguin Books Ltd., 2003. Greenberg, Clement. Clement Greenberg The Collected Essays and Criticism, Volume 4: Modernism with a Vengeance Edited by John O Brian. Vol. 4, Modernist Painting. Chicago: T he University of Chicago Press, 1993. Hatch, John G. Fatum as Theme and Method in the Work of Francis Bacon. Artibus et Historiae Vol. 19 No. 37 (1998): 163175. Iversen, Margaret. Beyond Pleasure: Freud, Lacan, Barthes University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2007. Kelley, Mike. Ive Got This Strange Feeling: Mike Kelley and Jeffrey Sconce on The Uncanny Interview by Jeffrey Sconce. Tate Etc.: Europes Largest Art Magazine Issue 1 (Summer 2004). Kristeva, Julia. Powers of Ho rror: An Essay on Abjection. Translated by Leon S. Roudiez. New York: Columbia University Press, 1982. Lomas, David. The Haunted Self New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2000. Wilde, Oscar. The Works of Oscar Wilde New York: Walter J. Black Inc., 1927.

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36 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Chesley Lewis was born and raised in Panama City Beach, Florida. Upon graduating high school as s alutatorian she attended Auburn University. Chesley then transferred to the University of West Florida (Pensacola), where she re ceived her BFA with a minor in philosophy in 2007. In fall 2007, she entered the graduate program at the University of Florida (Gainesville), where she received her MFA in 2010.