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Dani Godreau (BFA '12)

Published April 11, 2012

Sita as Tsunami" oil on panel, 24x24

“My work explores female gender roles and sexuality in Thai culture on both a personal and global level. I was brought up in an environment which blended the heritage of my Thai mother and American father, and as a result I was placed me in the unique position of simultaneously belonging to both and neither world. Through my investigation of feminine cultural identity my paintings create a dialogue between Western and Eastern tradition by referencing historical Western artistic themes in tandem with Thai narratives, dance, motifs and patterns. The primary vehicle for this series is the national Thai epic the Ramakien, a story I have grown up with. From this mythology I’ve borrowed the heroine, Sita, who culturally represents the ideal woman. In these paintings I present the Eastern protagonist in poses from western art history like the Pieta, Penitent Mary Magdalene, and Eve. In this way I allow Sita to stand in as a symbol for all women spanning across the Eastern/Western cultural divide.”