Out-of-Bounds: re-imagining the border through contemporary art narratives

McGill, C 2014, Out-of-Bounds: re-imagining the border through contemporary art narratives, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Art, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Out-of-Bounds: re-imagining the border through contemporary art narratives
Author(s) McGill, C
Year 2014
Abstract The materiality of national borders is changing from structures of stone and steel to networks of ideas and understandings. Containment and exclusion, while still evident, are being understood more broadly in terms of their social and cultural impacts. Nationhood and citizenship are beginning to be diluted as economic opportunity gains primacy, such as in the European Union. Globalization spreads with little regard to locality. The Internet transcends place.

Artists have explored the significance of borders in many ways, including their role as political entities, during war and its aftermath and the effect on refugees, after colonization, in their cartographic form and as barriers to individual crossers. In this research, I consider how, as a visual artist, I can gain insights into borders as a contemporary phenomenon through personal experiences of a range of borders.

This research was carried out in the United States of America, Indonesia and Australia, at several sites, using contemporary inter-disciplinary art methodologies to re-contextualise and re-imagine borders. Drawing on my personal experience, news-media reports, and observational field trips, I have constructed narratives, using video and still photography, text, prints, drawings and artist books, performance and sound, to formulate my own multi-dimensional experiences of borders, as a visual method of understanding border dynamics.

Working at the intersect of artists such as Guillermo Gomez-Pena on one side and the notions of social theorists such as Eiki Berg on the other, I consider the impact of the flux of borders through memory, stories and reminiscence. I propose that contemporary national borders can be perceived as transcending history and geography, nurturing the ascendancy of the non-citizen, and existing experientially so that each person, everywhere, into the future, could be the new border.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Art
Keyword(s) Border
Art
Narratives
Contemporary
Citizen
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Created: Wed, 01 Apr 2015, 11:32:02 EST by Denise Paciocco
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