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World beyond the horizon: Reconstructing the complexity of the ‘normal’ experience.

Bourke, SF 2011 , 'World beyond the horizon: Reconstructing the complexity of the ‘normal’ experience.', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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World Beyond the Horizon explores the way people witness and experience
variations of light falling on a landscape. To support the investigation I used the
case study of the 1979 Mt Erebus aviation disaster in Antarctica, to explore
degraded visual functioning, a condition resulting from variable perceptual
experiences formed through the senses.
The landscape of Northern Tasmania was surveyed from the cockpit of an
aircraft – the ‘flight view’, where sound recordings and video data were
collected to study the extent to which light conditions may affect the process of
The work of John Constable and Joseph Turner who, through their own art
practices, pioneered new ways to depict light in the 1800’s, have been central to
my investigation. In his paintings, Constable predicts changing weather
patterns, through time, by referring to the science of meteorology. By contrast,
Turner’s paintings are freely abstract, atmospheric and immediate with
recognisable forms disappearing almost entirely, leaving only light, space and
natural elements. Constable offers a pictorial forecast of the weather as a pilot
would witness it from the ground, where as Turner places himself in the
weather as a pilot would do while flying. The work of Constable and Turner
expresses ideas of observation and participation that are integral and
complementary to my study of the ‘flight view’. To experiment with the paradox of reality and illusion and to create the
synthetic experience of ‘scientific landscapes’, I designed and built an optical
laboratory. The outcomes of this have been presented as a video-sound

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Bourke, SF
Keywords: perception, flight view, Tasmania, optical laboratory, synthetic vision, remanufactured landscape, experimental film, Antarctica, New Zealand, Erebus disaster, mental-sets
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Copyright 2011 the Author

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