Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Sites of sky : a visual cultures analysis of landscape aesthetics in an age of virtual ecologies
Author: Sansone, Nicole Danielle
ISNI:       0000 0004 7969 7030
Awarding Body: Goldsmiths, University of London
Current Institution: Goldsmiths College (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
This thesis maps practices of making images of the sky across art, science, and digital culture. Skies present an unparalleled opportunity to consider the disparate topics of aesthetics and epistemology in one setting, and their historical treatment in both the sciences and the arts serves as an equalizer between thinking images in the two domains. The thesis is organized into three sections, each emphasizing a different mode of perception (ecological, human, and technological). Section I demonstrates a link between aesthetic strategies and pluralities of knowledge. Chapter one provides a brief overview, and counter-reading, of the history of clouds in Western culture. Chapter two explores the limits of the image as a representative form through the process of cloud-extraction in satellite images. Section II explores modes of aesthetic engagement and knowledge creation through two related technical systems: the computer graphics pipeline and computer graphics and animation software. Chapter three shows how rendering protocols operate between human and technical ideals of realism in the photography series Postcards from Google Earth. Chapter four proposes the software Blender as a site of displaced optics, and stresses the continuous relation between human perception and software logic. Section III draws from my virtual ethnographic work on amateur earth modeling communities. In these final two chapters I build an aesthetics of ecological realism from discourses of troubleshooting. This is counterbalanced with the history of visualization in scientific computing to underscore the notion that visual phenomena can never be represented through a one-to-one capture, but instead are always situated in reciprocal negotiations between aesthetics and epistemology. Through this work I reveal a set of attendant epistemologies that shape both nature aesthetics and knowledge of the physical world. My conclusions reinforce that the relationship between images and modes of looking and interpretation is fundamental to epistemic practices.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral