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Paradox as catalyst : art, ephemera, installation, activism, festival and environmental critique

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Anglesey, JN (2013) Paradox as catalyst : art, ephemera, installation, activism, festival and environmental critique. PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Abstract

This project investigates site-specific, ephemeral installation with environmental discourse. The exploration began in response to factional debates surrounding the proposed Tamar Valley Gunns Paper Pulp Mill, which involved clear-fell logging and subsequent degradation of water catchment areas. Tasmania is a site for continuous factional debates surrounding environmental protection and potentially ecological destructive commercial ventures. The scope of this project has emerged from the conflict evidenced through human interaction with planet Earth’s finite resources and lack of respect for global ecological fragility.
References to every-day objects, popular symbolism, the beautiful and the sublime are calculated to inspire awe and deep reverence. The work’s beauty and/or grandeur lures audience to an initial engagement and uses metaphorical titles to reference concepts and discourses. The works employ a variety of techniques and site determines scale.
As the project developed, the tree, as subject and art object, became a primary focus. Some works were placed in bush settings only accessible by foot, allowing for a holistic saturation of the senses to accompany the experience. This strategy was intended to inspire a connection with nature.
To further highlight environmental critique, community space and the landscapes attached to eco-festivals were ideal sites for the works. This included festivals with a visual art focus and festivals with a music and arts focus supported by an eco-sustainability ethos. Installing in public and the organised artist talks included in some of the festivals, added to the didactic and scope for activism.
The exegesis provides the context for this investigation. It examines art and environmental critique, land art, earth art and environmental art in historical context, ephemera, installation, sustainable practice, festival and the public sphere.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Art critisism, installation, environmental art, festival, environmental activism, Tasmania
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2014 the Author

Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2014 00:16
Last Modified: 01 Jun 2016 17:00
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