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Title: 'I came here a stranger, as a stranger I depart' : an investigation into the relationship between drawing and narrative of place
Author: Fisher, James
Awarding Body: University of Gloucestershire
Current Institution: University of Gloucestershire
Date of Award: 2009
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This practice-based research investigates the relationship between the process of making layered images and narratives of walked journeys. Two such journeys – Franz Schubert’s song cycle, Winterreise, and the autobiographical account of John Clare’s escape from an asylum, Reccolections &c Of Journey From Essex – were examined and compared through a body of drawings, prints and paintings. A study of the construction of the two narratives highlighted their layered composition: Winterreise is experienced as a synthesis of Wilhelm Müller’s poems and Schubert’s musical setting; whilst the full impact of Clare’s account is appreciated in the context of his poetry and biography. The research began with a bookwork, a visual response to the layering of information observed in the song cycle of Winterreise, and led to the formulation of a method of interpreting narratives using Thomas De Quincey’s model of The Palimpsest. De Quincey identified the effacements, amendments and aggregation of material in a palimpsest manuscript with the absorption of experience. In paintings made to interpret the experience of Winterreise, abrading layers of a picture surface elicited the compound characteristics of the narrative: allowing one idea to be seen through another. The fictive identity of the song cycle emerged in a suite of monoprints, through their assembly of layered imagery. Conversely, John Clare’s account is that of an actual journey, physically walked. The research culminated in a focus on the terrain of the two narratives. The metaphorical landscape of Winterreise is contrasted with Clare’s more visceral relationship with earth and trees through a series of paintings based on Journey From Essex. The research discovered new possibilities in the narratives’ meaning through the invention of a visual language to describe both physical nature of walking and a distinctive sense of place.
Supervisor: Rosenbloom, Paul ; Stonyer, Andrew ; Maclennan, Heather Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: NC Drawing Design Illustration ; ND Painting ; PR English literature ; PT Germanic literature