Document Type


Date of Degree

Spring 2010

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Art History

First Advisor

Craig Adcock

First Committee Member

Barbara B. Mooney

Second Committee Member

Christopher D. Roy

Third Committee Member

James Throgmorton

Fourth Committee Member

Wallace Tomasini


Buster Simpson is a Seattle-based artist who creates work that revolves around environmental issues in public settings. His ecological messages reach local communities through works that are often funded by percent-for-art programs, non-profit organizations such as schools and museums, and other public institutions. By using recycled materials or by purifying water, Simpson's public art draws attention to the local environment, and his works provide examples of ways that people can care for their local surroundings. My thesis sheds light on Simpson's public and environmental work, detailing the creative manner in which he incorporates history, education, and artistic complexity into his sculptures. Through their aesthetics and their real-world utility, Simpson's works nurture neighborhoods.


art, contemporary, ecology


xiv, 285 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 270-285).


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Copyright 2010 Anna Marie Heineman