Penn State

Bonnie Collura - associate professor of art, Penn State University Park

Book Title: Frankenstein

Author: Mary Shelley

Book Description:

In Mary Shelly’s 1818 novel, Frankenstein, the concept of creation begins with an experiment by Victor Frankenstein. Through electricity, the “Creation,” a corporeal amalgam, is brought to life.


This novel has been a long-term inspiration for me, as the struggle between the characters and the story’s multiple interpretations has left a lasting impression in my mind. Thoughts of this story continually creep into my studio practice. On most occasions, I think of this narrative as I am  literally using my hands to manifest something in three dimensions. The most obvious way I relate this novel to my work is through my sculpting. My sculptures are made from carved and cast parts, which are adhered together or form fitted together to make a formal, conceptual, evolving whole. This process often reminds me of how the Creation in Frankenstein was sewn together from several disparate dead parts to make one monstrous body.


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