Diva

WCU Author/Contributor (non-WCU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Lauren A. Medford (Creator)
Institution
Western Carolina University (WCU )
Web Site: http://library.wcu.edu/
Advisor
Matthew Liddle

Abstract: My work addresses the aesthetics of flamboyance, glamour, and attitude to express the “camp” sensibilities of the Diva in popular culture. These concepts are explored through the selection of various materials associated with fashion to create sculptural forms that underscore the campy dimension of Diva-ness. Fashion is represented through the use of luscious textures, monochromatic color palettes, and accouterments that merge biomorphic forms with fabric. Fashion plays an influential role in the work through inspiration, material choice, compositions, and aesthetics. Through my practice and research, I have come to view Diva-ness as a subcategory of Camp or as its own category, “Diva Camp.” I have identified four categories in which the relationship between camp and Diva sensibilities run parallel: over-the-top aesthetics, the act of playing the role, self-parody, and gender performativity. The use of a monochromic color scheme and flamboyant fashion materials associated with Diva costuming that are ostentatiously female fit the categories of over-the-top aesthetics and gender performance. The materials used in my work—feather boas and dresses laden with fringe and beads--are campy by their very nature. The forms themselves play a role; they evoke the spirit of Diva-ness through their poses and aesthetics. Self-parody is achieved through the use of the Doric pedestals to support some of the forms. The pedestals are a play on ‘low’ or cheap objects (plant stand) imitating ‘high’ classical Greek architecture. The sculptural pieces are abstract forms that have a human-like presence—each with its own personality, much like pop culture divas themselves. My installations create a sensory experience of Diva campiness through glittery, flamboyant, and mock-glamorous excess.

Additional Information

Publication
Thesis
Language: English
Date: 2019
Keywords
Camp, Cher, DIva, Fashion, Notes on "Camp", Susan Sontag

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