Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Arts (MA)

Degree Name


Other Degree Name/Area of Focus

Art History and Criticism

Department or School/College

School of Visual and Media Arts

Committee Chair

Julia Galloway

Commitee Members

Valerie Hedquist, Tobin Addington, Nikolyn Garner


lemons, vanitas, dutch golden age, contemporary art


University of Montana

Subject Categories

Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque Art and Architecture | Contemporary Art | Fine Arts | Other History of Art, Architecture, and Archaeology | Theory and Criticism


In seventeenth-century Dutch painting, the lemon holds a prominent visual, economical, socio-cultural, and moral position. This trend would then be repeated in contemporary art, beginning in roughly the 1970s. This thesis, in two parts, will explore the significance of the prevalence of the lemon and their recurrent presence in both Dutch Golden Age art and modern and contemporary artwork. This multivalent approach will look at lemons as not only a visual representation of fruit, but a symbol of larger concepts such as globalization, commercialism, colonialism, sexuality, religion, linguistics, mythology, and pop culture.



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