Wayfaring: place and painting in the tropical far north

Scotcher, Jacqueline (2018) Wayfaring: place and painting in the tropical far north. PhD thesis, James Cook University.

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Walking and painting are investigated in this research to establish a connection with the previously unfamiliar environment of tropical Far North Queensland. This practice-led research project reveals how walking mindfully in nature, and embodied bodily knowledge, can inform works of art.

The research is influenced by anthropologist Tim Ingold's (2011) notion that life is a process of wayfaring where we experience the world in terms of movement along a meshwork of trails. Ingold's writing instigated a fundamental shift in my understanding of place. At the beginning of the project I imagined place as a contained or fixed location, however I came to understand place as a sensuous internal/external experience developed over time and along continuous pathways. As a result of engaging with the phenomenology of walking in the natural tropical terrain, I developed a methodology of wayfaring-painting. This new mode of imaginative wayfaring onto the canvas became both a specific mode of creative practice and a means for expressing a wayfaring philosophy in material form on individual canvases and in also the composition and arrangement of the final Wayfaring exhibition. This approach to place-making offers a vision of the tropical landscape that emphasises the significance of the lived experience of contemporary life in the Far North.

A central question guides this practice-led research project: How can a body of contemporary visual art evoke the experience of wayfaring in the tropical Far North? Progressive findings are shown in staging exhibitions, culminating in Wayfaring, in which the works of art evoke my phenomenological experience of walking on forest paths and stretches of beach in the Far North. These are the places I've come to know as 'home'. Viewers are invited to take their own wandering journey through the abstracted painted landscapes, which aim to evoke new understandings of the tropical environment and, perhaps, illuminate their own experiences of wayfaring in the world. Wayfaring-painting involves manifesting this sensuous contact in painting. This combination led to new imaginative terrains, revealing deeper understandings of place, self and belonging.

Item ID: 58546
Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: wayfaring, painting, immersive contemplative practice, tropical Australia
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Copyright Information: Copyright © 2018 Jacqueline Scotcher.
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Publications arising from this thesis are available from the Related URLs field. The publications are:

Scotcher, Jacqueline (2016) Wayfaring and creative practice in Tropical Far North Queensland landscapes. Etropic: electronic journal of studies in the tropics, 15 (2). pp. 42-58.

Date Deposited: 06 Jun 2019 21:58
FoR Codes: 19 STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING > 1905 Visual Arts and Crafts > 190502 Fine Arts (incl Sculpture and Painting) @ 80%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1601 Anthropology > 160104 Social and Cultural Anthropology @ 20%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9501 Arts and Leisure > 950104 The Creative Arts (incl. Graphics and Craft) @ 80%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society @ 20%
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