Art, Art History and Design, School of


First Advisor

Francisco Souto

Second Advisor

Karen Kunc

Date of this Version


Document Type



A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Fine Arts, Major: Art, Under the supervision of Professor Francisco Souto. Lincoln, Nebraska: April, 2018

Copyright (c) 2018 Richard Pecos Pryor


“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” -Annie Dillard

I want to make art that is worthwhile, that shares something important. This desire often overwhelms and hinders me from starting projects. I find myself questioning the purpose of art altogether. Yet, once I relinquish control into action—just simply start and keep going—the unforeseen meaning eventually presents itself.

Drawings begin with lines. Partnered with curiosity, I began this series by exploring the potential of drawing materials. How far and for how long can a single sharpened pencil last? What does a mile of lines look like? These curiosities parallel my life’s larger questions: how many years will I have with my parents? What do I want to do for the rest of my life? As time is the border of a life, I have used distance and duration as the self-prescribed parameter for these images. The various expressions of time and distance are a metaphor for our mortality and most of all, our potential.

These works are created through repetitive actions and many are slowly developed over extended periods of time. My mind often follows the cadence of my body into a state of meditation. Reflecting on a lifespan, the journey of art-making becomes an aid to awareness and gratitude.

The process is the impetus—time, distance, and materials become means to explore the significance of the rituals of everyday life. In search for meaning, I’ve found that the spectacular occurs within life’s natural procession.

Advisor: Francisco Souto

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