Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Melaine Nakaue

Reader 2

Nancy Macko

Rights Information

© 2018 Catherine A Glah


This thesis combines personal experiences of depression with experimentation of media, and consists of four projects including a set of five postcards, a graduation robe, and a tapestry collection. The final project, and central focus, is a series of 100 digital images that was created to distract the artist from harmful mental breakdowns. The series is aptly named Coping and has become a study on expressions of the mind.

The exploration of the subconscious through art has roots in psychology and influences from several art movements. Psychologist Sigmund Freud recognized the power of the unconscious mind, and his psycho-analytical discoveries influenced artists in both the Surrealist Automatic and Abstract Expression movements (Turner, pgs. 373-374). Artists such as Andre Masson, Joan Miro, and Jackson Pollock experimented with subconscious thoughts, images and techniques. Additionally, contemporary artists such as Yayoi Kusama reference psychological states of being in their work by using specific denotative elements such as pattern, shape and color.

Even though Coping was not initially created with conscious intention, the work proves that art can be both an insight into the subconscious and a powerful coping mechanism.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.