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Leave No Trace: Incongruous Environmental Affiliations in American Art after 1970

Beckhurst, Gabriella; (2022) Leave No Trace: Incongruous Environmental Affiliations in American Art after 1970. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This project investigates the junctures of US-based queer and feminist artistic practices with environmental and spatial politics between 1970 and 2008. Across three chapters the thesis examines how the work of David Wojnarowicz, Eleanor Antin, Stanya Kahn, Harry Dodge and others engages an imaginary of ecological affects and disaffects through self-reflexive registers in performance, video and photography. I focus on conceptual persona as a dynamic form used by these artists to critically dramatise struggles within resistance practices and sketch coalitional alternatives under settlercolonial and western economic regimes. The thesis is organised around a set of aesthetic-affective modes such as improvisation, slapstick and situational irony that target the system relations shaping the incongruous dimensions of lived experience, ecological imperatives and suspended agency. Considering both artistic innovations and failures presented by these artists, the project articulates incongruity as a critical aesthetic that draws together fantasy and the ordinary to interrogate trenchant power relations across land use, tourism, gentrification and access. In turn, the project maps fruitful coordinates between queer and trans, critical race and ecocritical epistemologies and aesthetic forms across key points in the contemporary development of these histories.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Leave No Trace: Incongruous Environmental Affiliations in American Art after 1970
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2022. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of History of Art
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10153249
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