Date of Award

Spring 5-30-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)


Graphic Design

First Advisor

James Goggin

Second Advisor

Lucinda Hitchcock

Third Advisor

Keetra Dean Dixon


This thesis examines and retraces ways in which graphic design is fundamentally concerned with relational space, and tests spatialized theories, methods, and potential for praxis.

My practice investigates the relational qualities and dimensions of graphic design at three distinct scales.

1. Spatial logic (format) within a design object [Design space, book space, format, structure, sequence, counterforms, etc. (authority structure vs agency of user) within the design].

2. Spatial relations (sequence) between participants across a network. [Space to hear & see each other; to relate and connect].

3. Space within the world (circulation) [Space as composition, product, relational; not container, not fixed. Power and agency operating in physical space].

Through research, experiments, and projects, I examine the materiality of language in relation to the construction and composition of space.

Understanding how language is made to operate authoritatively in space, and how space as a composition can be reordered and interrupted, opens the possibilities for understanding & agency within the subjective, the interpersonal, and the environment.

Treating language and space as elastic allows us to see what is as only one version of what might be. This re-visioning becomes generative in its potential for affective strategies towards connection and collaboration, and a catalyst for organizing and action.



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