Melbourne Conservatorium of Music - Theses

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    Casting an ensemble of objects: producing objects within a post-medium specific 'photographic' logic
    Adair, Paul ( 2012)
    This practice-led research project investigates the potential of an evolving relationship between photography and sculpture. The aim is to expand photographic discourse through the production of a cast ensemble of objects, within a post-medium specific ‘photographic’ logic. That is, a post-medium specific understanding of ‘photography’ that is not solely contingent on a photograph, as a material host, but rather, generative of sculptural objects in relation to images. The paper explicates a series of conditions or relationships, which can be seen as ‘photographic’, based on the photographic mediums facilities to reproduce, copy and multiply – as the principal impetus in not only the production, but also the presentation and perception of objects within the gallery space. A trajectory that originated from correlations made between the sculptural technique of moulding and casting to the technical production of photographic images. A lineage is drawn through a culture of copying pictures and images, commonly associated with appropriation art, and more specifically, the ‘Pictures Generation’, as a means to position the production of cast replica objects within a ‘photographic’ logic. Subsequently, links are made between the presentation and display of ‘sculpture’ within framing mechanisms, which includes the gallery space as a framing device, as a process of ‘image’ production and composition. And lastly, the paper considers our perception of everyday objects, in relation to images of the mind or memories as ‘psychologised objects’. Positioning replica objects as physical ‘ghosts’, which embody the absent object, they were reproduced from – as a conflated object image. The paper contextualises these processes, which form the parameters for the practice-led research, within a theoretical argument, leaving the greater ‘meaning’ of the work open-ended. The exhibition presents a series of recognisably commonplace replica objects, as a cast ensemble of interrelated yet discrete sculptural objects. The works are arranged and displayed predominantly on the floor of the gallery space, or on other objects, which act as host structures for display.