Sean Briggs BFA Illustration Thesis Spring 2018

Conflict is a human theme, achingly relatable as it flows through our beings as an instinctive discipline of human nature. Good art provides an instant and jarring immersion into the emotional goal of the creation. My objective as a creator is to deviously immerse the viewer in a culturally familiar Sci-Fi/Fantasy setting, then surprise them with something they did not know about the horrors of true conflict. While the Sci-Fi realm has been busy becoming an emotional escape, I use the recognizable genre as an aperture to the realities that human conflict can cause.

The agony, exhaustion, terror, and chronic weariness hostility generates is grossly misrepresented in the fantasy brand. In most fantasy narratives, a destitute and oppressed character forges on through discord, where they find inner strength and seizes success in their plight. In these counterfeit models of heroism, the viewer may experience temporary hope for their own struggles, but they will not realize relief when they examine the story and find a fraudulent falsehood. Society’s impractical expectation of a hero’s strength when there is strife ultimately results in disenchanted despair and cultural amnesia for the phenomenon and actuality of the primitive human experience of trauma. The hero concept is severed from the realities of the slaughter and devastation that conflict and war produces. My art rests in a crevice between beauty and suffering and clutches the ambition of providing the viewer with a resilient souvenir; the recapture of the complexity of being alive.

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Spring 2018