Monash University
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Space, place and recurring history

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posted on 2019-03-01, 05:01 authored by Orr, Jillian Lesley
The works created for this research are responses to some perceived impediments to social change which have been linked to issues faced by our environmentally challenged planet. This research is framed by the notion of culture as nature, termed by Janine Burke. 1 However I have viewed this conceptual space as vast and inclusive residing between binary oppositional structures. Part of the process of undoing, opening up and expanding oppositions is to enable an active and open space where hearing/ listening/ imagining/ and visualising become active communication methods. Some of the works exhibited and produced for this PhD research, are remediated from live performance events and some are performative photographs that are created as performances for the camera. Space, Place and Recurring History is an analysis through art practice, of relations to place that have left social, historical and environmental traces which are experienced as obstructions from the past relived in the present. The artworks produced for this research have varied in performance methodology. The Crossing is a collaborative performance event that occurred on Lock Island, Mildura. The local Indigenous community was involved as well as six other performers and production crew. The video remediation is seen over six video chapters where the exhibition space governs the installation and viewing possibilities. Another performance methodology occurred for A Prayer that was commissioned as an interventionist style performance for the 2007 Darwin Festival. This was only two weeks after the Howard Government’s Emergency Response into Indigenous Communities had occurred. A Prayer is situated in a busy market place amongst random shoppers that are included within the performance field. The other works are photographically based, performances for the camera or performative photography. These works differently visualize space, place and recurring history through specific sites in relation to the body that in varying ways depict and are embedded by traces of history, climate, culture and locale. The Southern Cross- to bear and behold, Faith in a Faithless Land, Vision and Between Somewhere and Nowhere, ultimately exist as photographs that have already, or are yet to become, part of the cultural landscape.


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Principal supervisor

Jan Bryant

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Department, School or Centre

Fine Art


Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Type



Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture

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