IN FLUX: Land, Photography and Temporality

  • John Samuel Sunderland

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


This thesis accompanies a practice as research doctoral project that investigates the perceptual mechanisms and conceptions of land as a site of constant change. It utilises photographic practice as a form of visual communication. The aim is to examine the roles of movement and memory in the perceptual experiences of the environment through a phenomenological framework that involves the consideration of the concepts of place and space from a temporal perspective. The principal theme is how the moving and changing environment can be interpreted through the stasis of photography and what this implies about the individual’s relationship to it. The research methodology is a Rhizomatic multi‐site and multi‐process approach, utilising various methods and investigating site types appropriately as an interwoven practice. This has resulted in five separate bodies of work that deal with different forms of movement. The work employs close range photogrammetry techniques liberated from the empirical traditions of archaeological photography and time‐lapse to investigate the human‐scaled aerial view and visually interpret embodiment in the environment. An exhibition, titled Continuum derived from this practice was also shown at Avenue Gallery, Northampton University, UK, from 27th October 2014 ‐ 7th November 2014. A catalogue of works, titled In Flux; Land, Photography and Temporality accompanies this thesis as a PDF on the disc provided (appendix # 1). The research concludes that a consideration of time and space as durational and flowing can be interpreted through the stasis of photography. Through this the changing nature of the environment can be investigated. This is achieved by extending the duration of photographic processes and making them evident in the resulting works. It is also enhanced through curatorial sequencing in a body of work that mimics environmental temporal experience as perceived by the mobile individual.
Date of Award2015
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Northampton
SupervisorJanet Wilson (Supervisor), Helen Sear (Supervisor) & Sri-Kartini Leet (Supervisor)

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