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PLaCE Visiting Speaker Series 2010-11: Dr Owain Jones & Davina Kirkpatrick

Dr Owain Jones & Davina Kirkpatrick: Towards landscape as an ecology of practices of (non)representation
PLaCE/LAND2 Speaker Series 2010-2011
Thursday 31st March 2011

Dr Owain Jones & Davina Kirkpatrick:
Towards landscape as an ecology of practices of (non)representation
This presentation builds upon a previous presentation given at the Royal Geographical Society International Conference 2010, in the Geography and Twentieth Century British Poetry Session entitled “Poets (artists), the Severn Estuary (and us)” and continues this conversation. It seeks to explore the landscape of the Severn Estuary in inter-personal, intertextual, inter-art/social science practice senses.

We seek not only to affect the claim by Wylie (2007: 217) that ‘landscape is a perceiving-with, that with which we see, a creative tension of self and world’ (2007: 217) but also Madrell’s (2010: 138) emphasis of the ‘polyvocal, dynamic, processes’ that conjure landscapes, and ‘representations’ of them, into being. Landscapes are woven from the relational, the temporal and the multiple interventions of differing practices and practitioners which can come together in many ways. We also point out that Mike Pearson’s observations - “this is slippery ground, places without firm boundaries, places which perhaps only the poet can map” and “the performance of poetry and narrative are simultaneously acts of memory and creation” – might be particularly apt re the Severn Estuary, and we link our own practices to the poems of Philip Gross’
‘The Water Table’ and Alice Oswald’s ‘A Sleep Walk on the Severn’.

Owain Jones is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of the West of England with intersecting interests in place, landscape, nature, memory, and relational / non-representational approaches to these. Davina Kirkpatrick’s background is in theatre design, public art, socially engaged practice, and collaborative inter-disciplinary projects. She also trained in architectural glass, vitreous enamel and print. Her current research has culminated in a new body of work exploring the themes of bereavement and loss, fairytales and dreamscapes, presence and absence.

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