Kat Johnson

Date of Award


Level of Access

Campus-Only Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)




Owen F. Smith

Second Committee Member

Nate Aldrich

Third Committee Member

Marcia Douglas


This thesis paper discusses the theory and motivation behind it is x..., my thesis project. Section 1 describes the research and context behind the making of the work, it is x. This section provides the linear trajectory of thought leading to the thesis statement 'repetition leads to transformation'. Drawing upon theories proposed by Zen Buddhism, theory of systems thinking, and the use of the scientific method for creating work, I explain how these themes aid in the explanation of this seemingly paradoxical and ironic statement. Section 2 chronicles in detail the trajectory of how the thesis work was created. It begins with a piece created in the summer of 2011, and tracks the works created over the following years that explored, challenged, and expanded the foundational inspiration for the work. Section 3 is the accompanying appendix of images and portfolio explanation of the works included in section 2, as well as other developmentally important pieces created over the span of my time as a graduate student.