My recent graduate artwork uses abstraction of form to describe the intersection between humans and the environment while relating the landscape of our skin to the ever-changing qualities of the natural landscape surrounding us. The photographic material is stressed into three dimensional shapes, producing creasing and tears as it is being contorted by human impact. At the same time that I am creating something new, I am manipulating artifactual evidence of something that already exists in everyday life. This is akin to how our bodies are distorted by outer influence, as well as our own autonomy. Above and below the surface of our bodies and the natural world do not differ too far from one another.

The landscape images in this series explore the quality and health of the Minnesota River. The work aims to extend beyond the pollution into a broader connection of humans and the ways life affects our surroundings and water sources. As the most polluted waterway within the state, the Minnesota River merges with the Mississippi River, near Minneapolis-St. Paul. The transference of the Minnesota River’s elevated and suspended solids and nutrients eventually contribute to the adverse water quality downstream as the Mississippi River flows through our nation.

We as humans coexist with the natural world through continuous adaptation and the conscious urge to continue living despite the elements that disrupt our being.


Areca Roe

Committee Member

Liz Miller

Committee Member

Ryan Wersal

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)

Program of Study



Humanities and Social Sciences



Rights Statement

In Copyright