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Sara Dotterer

I am currently pursuing my MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX. I am a research-based, multimedia artist. Art is a lens through which I see the world. It governs how I interact with others, and much to my annoyance, constantly pushes me to question the status quo. 


Before enrolling in my MFA program, I worked in research and brand strategy at two different agencies in New York City and Austin, TX. I am a native of Richmond, VA, and, a frequenter of Charleston, SC, my dad's hometown. I've grown up taking advantage of the urban life of Richmond, the mountains of northwest Virginia, and the low country of South Carolina. The hustle and chaos of a big city invigorates me just as much as an early morning boat ride through a winding marsh.

I graduated from Washington and Lee University in 2018 with a double major in Studio Art and Anthropology. At my university, I was the Co-President of the Washington and Lee Repertoire Dance Company and President of Washington and Lee's Student Arts League. The role that dance and studio art play in my life has evolved over my time at W&L– from dancer to choreographer, and painter to advocate for other student artists. 

I have a curiosity for new places and cultures that has brought me to places all over the world to gain new perspectives. As a 16 year old, I traveled to Fiji, New Zealand, and Tahiti with a group of 20 students I had never met before. I received two grants in 2016 to travel to Italy for 3 months to study Italian culture, language, and advertising. For the summer of 2017, I traveled to NYC to intern with a contemporary artist and do my own research on the way that smartphones affect movement in public spaces. In 2018, upon my graduation, I received a grant to continue research on phone use in the public sphere in Bologna, Italy. When I visit a new place, I like to act as a local would, and understand the unique approach to life of a person who lives hundreds of miles away from me. I believe in talking to every person you come across – who knows what they have to offer?

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