Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Fine Arts


Visual Arts


David Ross Merritt


In a combined Masters of Fine Art Thesis exhibition and dossier, entitled Across Boundaries, I focus primarily on transformational, productive labour as an important theoretical approach to help acknowledge the silenced trauma surrounding the Korean War in North America. My art practice focuses on an exploration of a hybrid, diasporic identity where I am situated between two cultures—my ancestral home, Korea, and the home where I was raised, Canada. Through my research trip to South Korea, I was able to discover the difficulties of the war that the two Koreas face and that is kept separate from the West. I found that the kind of traumatic losses in the war exists in what Jacques Ranciere calls the “unrepresentable.” I am driven by an installation and performance art practice that allows me to empathize with the ongoing victims of the war.

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