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What bone shall speak for me? : Seeking the language of bones : a photographic investigation


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Pitchford, J 2007 , 'What bone shall speak for me? : Seeking the language of bones : a photographic investigation', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Through the media of analogue and digital imagery and the discipline of
theoretical research, this project investigates skeletal remains to elucidate their
language by examining them in evolutionary, historical, cultural and ritual
In the context of this exegesis skeletal remains are indicated as metaphors for
narrative and language. The exegesis discusses the manner in which bones are
subject to a form of metamorphosis that is influenced and directed by the
languages used to describe them, which in turn are directed by the position,
experiential history and cultural background of the viewer/interpreter. These
concepts are investigated in the context of artistic practice, with reference to the
work of Henry Moore, Harry Nankin, J. John Priola, Stephanie Valentin and
The outcome of the research project is realised in a visual arts exhibition. The wall
mounted images, the specimen book of images and the shelf installation of bones with
different objects all allude to the essential ambiguity and fluidity of the nature of bones
and the languages associated with and imposed on them.
In seeking the language of bones, the exhibition reveals that the reply to the question What
bone shall speak for me? is as individually subjective and mutable as the images and objects

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Pitchford, J
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Copyright 2007 the author

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