The copy as a paradox of change: copying and mimicry in social interaction

Gailer, J 2016, The copy as a paradox of change: copying and mimicry in social interaction, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Art, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title The copy as a paradox of change: copying and mimicry in social interaction
Author(s) Gailer, J
Year 2016
Abstract This research project investigates the paradox of the copy through experimental print-media methods. It examines the copy as a primary component of social change and as a transformative act usually associated with concepts of the original. The paradox of copying as apparent in processes of mimicry in human interaction is positioned and evidenced through the visual culture of printmaking, performance, painting and sculpture by means of mechanical, electronic or manual reproduction. The conceptual and theoretical frameworks of the research serve to emphasise the shift from the 20th-century notion of the original to the less definitive current status of the copy as evidenced in print-media practices and social change. The research identifies specific historical periods in which copying can be recognised as an agent of cultural change.

The project has articulated alternative interpretations of copying through a print-informed investigation. This approach has aided a multi-artform practice that challenges and reveals the significance of copying through collaborative and individual methods of production, enabling a greater insight into concepts and methodologies of copy-based art making. Through a sustained enquiry using processes of duplication, repetition and performance, artwork outcomes demonstrate the generative nature of copying. The final artworks of the project contribute to understandings of copy-based art-making through an investigation of copying and mimicry as a method to stimulate change in social interaction.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Art
Subjects Fine Arts (incl. Sculpture and Painting)
Postcolonial Studies
Performance and Installation Art
Keyword(s) Printmaking
social interaction
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Created: Thu, 27 Apr 2017, 13:19:43 EST by Denise Paciocco
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