Track & Trace Authenticity
BFA Thesis, 2015
Nominated for the GRA Thesis Prize
Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam
"In developing her thesis subject Anna noticed that 'authenticity' was something that she and people around her seemed to yearn for. And that the cultural marketplace was seemingly responding to and offering her at every turn, and yet, these offerings always seemed to be empty of the very thing they professed.
Anna has responded to this observation with a deeply reseached piece of writing on the history of authenticity as an idea, and how this idea seems to be culturally represented today. Anna's conclusions are insightful and avoid superficial and simplified futures, understanding the impossibility of really escaping this structure.
However, she touches on the emotional needs that drive the yearning - disenchantment and distrust - and failure as a possible, partial, faling, critical response. Using the formal structure of an online purchase 'flow chart', shows knowledge and positive use of irony within her arguments, as does the use of an actual and a representative 'I' as narrative voice.
This is a sophisticated strategy that reflects on Anna's studio practice as a performer, avoids broad cultural generalizations, and embodies the separation from the possibility of authenticity, which is her subject. This layering of reflections through both form and content make for a rich and rewarding text that is supported further by the inclusion of a wide variety of contemporary cultural objects.
This thesis considers a contemporary lived moment, locates it clearly within a history of ideas and reveals those ideas as represented today. It is well written, driven by a questioning curiosity, and beautifully laid out."
Janice McNab -Fine Art, GRA Awards 2015
Download thesis right here.