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The space of the screen and contemporary ambivalence : an innovative analysis of contemporary painterly pictorial construction

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Keating, MJ ORCID: 0000-0002-0428-1298 2003 , 'The space of the screen and contemporary ambivalence : an innovative analysis of contemporary painterly pictorial construction', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Abstract

This research project examines the nature of pictorial space within contemporary painting. It proposes, through the use of a studio-based investigation, a new condition of spatial construction that has been interpreted through the representational methodologies of the screen. It argues that the screen has become a dominant paradigm in the creation and articulation of an ambivalent condition of spatiality. This ambivalent condition is suggested in a body of painterly works as a closed cycle of movement in which objects and detail are dislocated within/on the pictorial plane whilst concurrently grounded in an illusion of reality. This project also establishes a perception of anxiety and spatial unease as being indicative of contemporary experience. This is instituted through the concept of something being a guise for "Nothing" and "Nothing" being a comment on contemporary experience. It argues that the something of "Nothing" is also a context for "otherness". The principle vehicle for this investigation is the inanimate figurine (toy soldier). It is used, within this context, as a paradoxical object from popular culture; it alludes to the current climate of unrest and quotes from propaganda imagery and other military representations within visual culture.
The analysis of pictorial space was initiated through observation and interpretation of painting practices and it was within this examination that a definition of the screen was located. The screen is defined as a methodology of literal and metaphorical representations that are part of an on-going evolution in pictorial construction. These practices are discussed under the related areas of the flat/deep space of the screen; the screen as a literal painterly boundary; and the screen as a metaphorical barrier. Other issues that are considered here are a re-definition of flatness; the allusion to "otherness" ; and the perception of anxiety and unease in contemporary painting. This research has developed practical strategies that contextualize these issues by subverting traditional notations of figure/ground relationships. They include both technical and conceptual applications such as the concurrent use of a variety of spatial paradigms, decoration (camouflage patterning), the cut-out silhouette, an original paint surface (the mica glaze/ pearl surface) and an overall sense of spatial compression within the pictorial plane.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Keating, MJ
Keywords: Painting, Modern
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2002 the author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Thesis (PhD)--University of Tasmania, 2003. Includes bibliographical references

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