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This research aims to suggest new ways of thinking about the significance of print in contemporary art. To explore its multi-faceted impact across media and consider printmaking as an integral aspect of other traditional fine art practices. The research will investigate current theory regarding printmaking and reference contemporary artists whose work expands printmaking beyond identification, in a broader field of contemporary ideas. Rosalind Krauss’ 1979 essay “Sculpture in the Expanded Field.” was addressing the word sculpture and the activities of contemporary artists who were making land art and non-functional architectural structures.1 Much of my research will be underpinned by key essays and writings by Krauss and, in particular, her seminal essay, “Re-inventing the medium” 1999, which appeals for some enduring form of medium specificity in an age of installation art and digital ascendency.2 My work aims to explore these ideas in relation to print, by interrogating its inherent materiality and the technologies and methods that surround its production. Through practice and reflective analysis, the research proposes to articulate an alternate conceptual perspective on the field of print as more sculptural and installation based by looking at the space in which the work evolves.    

In considering my own print practice in relation to other factors - such as site and location - and other media including metal casting, sound recording, photography, and various forms of assemblage, I attempt to form a framework to discuss print in an expanded field. I concentrate initially on the index as the principal object - and then subsequently how these are translated into and through other forms, tools, materials, and media – considering aspects of process, ephemerality, authenticity, reproduction and the human-mechanical/digital relationship.   

In the next phase of my research, I am concentrating specifically on three sites of production and inspiration: the studio, the rural museum/ archive, and the rural landscape, as places to both generate and exhibit work. Within the context of these sites, I will undertake a series of practice led case studies.   

Names of Supervisors: First Supervisor: Paul Harrison, Second Supervisor: Kate McLeod