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Lost or gone : nature’s remnants : mysteries and threats of human and native species interactions, past and present


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Parish, JS 2012 , 'Lost or gone : nature’s remnants : mysteries and threats of human and native species interactions, past and present', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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This exegesis explores, through an art practice, the environmental issues of species decline and loss. It asks the question ‘what can artists do to elevate public awareness of destructive environmental practices that are upsetting the ecological balance?’
References are made to historical searches for species on the brink of extinction, and present day fears of further decline in environmental diversity are examined. The design and construction of movement sensing cameras and the results of using unusual methods of detecting species type and abundance at several study sites will be presented in the final exhibition, alongside conventional drawings, paintings and sculptures, demonstrating that the potential for works generated directly from the natural environment and its creatures can be a genuine art form.
The current practice of clear felling native forest has fragmented and isolated remnant forests, leading to an actual or perceived decline in resident native animals and birds. In Tasmania, some species of birds have been lost forever, while the marsupial wolf or thylacine maintains a slender chance for discovery and possibly, recovery. I have developed and employed specific equipment in an attempt to establish what animals are active in a land area at Golden Valley on the slopes of the Western Tiers in Tasmania. This site has been the base for explorations into the surrounding bush land, where three other specific sites with different landforms have been chosen for more detailed study of the area’s flora and fauna.
On my own property in the area, the construction of extended wetland earthworks has given me the opportunity to study the effects of human intervention in the landscape and how this has affected the local resident creatures. These animals and birds have been drawn into a creative process to produce art works that are an assimilation of their input and my own.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Parish, JS
Keywords: Human, native, species, interactions, nature, remnants, devils, maggots
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Copyright 2012 the author

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