The elusive digital frame and the elasticity of time in painting

Robinson, Anne Elizabeth (2012) The elusive digital frame and the elasticity of time in painting. Doctoral thesis, London Metropolitan University.


How can we gain a deeper understanding about the emotional affects of painting with respect to temporality by working with the mechanisms and languages of the moving image? This practice-based doctoral research aims to add to our understanding of the perception of temporality in painterly surface and to investigate the relationship between subjective perceptions and emotional 'affect' in encounters with painting which offer an expanded and enhanced sense of lived temporality. The project sets out to do this by devising art works using the processes, apparatus and structures of 'experimental' film/video and photography. This work seeks to question what can cause the passing of time to become 'elastic' in the perception of the spectator encountering the 'strangeness' of painterly surface as an intense experience and asks how this phenomena may be connected with perceptions of time and vision for the embodied painter engaged in practice. In addition to painting practice within the project, works by Frank Auerbach are taken as examples of 'painterly' surface with which to consider temporality and spectator experience. The written thesis is used to document and reflect on the development of this practice-based work; in particular, insights derived from the two photo/video installation works Que Sera (2010) and Is It You? (2012) which juxtapose material made with high speed filming and long exposures and which engage with the 'frame' as a marker of time passing. The reflective thesis draws on theoretical material, including Maurice Merleau-Ponty's essays which propose painting as a form of metaphysics and a way of understanding how we see; Gilles Deleuze's work on the phenomenology of painting; the experimental film theory of Peter Gidal and recent neuroscientific work by Antonio Damasio, investigating vision and consciousness. This material is used in conjunction with observations from experimental and expanded film works as they deconstruct aspects of subjective temporality and visual perception.

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