An Examination, through Drawing, of the Text of Gilgamesh and How Translation and Transcription Can Inform Contemporary Drawing Practice

Neal, Allison R. B. (2017) An Examination, through Drawing, of the Text of Gilgamesh and How Translation and Transcription Can Inform Contemporary Drawing Practice. PhD thesis, University of Gloucestershire.

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An Examination, Through Drawing, of the Text of The Epic of Gilgamesh and How Translation and Transcription can Inform Contemporary Drawing Practice..pdf - Accepted Version
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This PhD began by attempting to locate the Epic of Gilgamesh within a contemporary landscape and using a comparison of Michael Ayrton and Sidney Nolan as a means of creating a body of narrative based drawing. Initial work, however, illustrated rather than illuminated the text. As the research evolved, analysis of the text as a model for thinking and the different approaches to landscape from Ayrton and Nolan, clarified that the metaphorical journey of Gilgamesh required a different drawing practice. The Epic of Gilgamesh was written in cuneiform script on clay tablets some four thousand years ago. The fragmented and incomplete tablets have survived by chance. Failure, evident in Gilgamesh’s quest, suggested exploring contingency and failure as agents of creative practice. The opportunity to draw directly from the clay tablets in the collection of the British Museum generated the insight that the apprehension of physical objects and their recording as image through drawing, also works as a process of visual translation. The original clay tablets became a source for making drawings possessing a physical equivalence beyond the normative approaches to translation and narrative. This was the central aspect of the final research, superseding the narrative drive that had been the original starting point. Models of working allusively with narrative and landscape were also provided by unique access to the archives of Sidney Nolan at The Rodd, in Herefordshire, and by analysing in parallel the work of Michael Ayrton. This aspect of the research developed as a way of asserting that in the liminal space of the studio, equivalence can be found with the complex and contingent aspects of quest narrative as exemplified by Gilgamesh. Working large scale, the final works produced for this PhD explore translation and transcription in drawing through the surface accretions of material, gesture, intuition and fold.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Advisors:
Thesis AdvisorEmailURL
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NC Drawing Design Illustration
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Creatives
Depositing User: Susan Turner
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2018 16:01
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2023 09:22

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