Skip to content

Creative Arts Forum | Elaine Stratford


Arts Forum is a public program of the School of Creative Arts

Start Date

12 Oct 2019 12:30 pm

End Date

12 Oct 2019 1:30 pm


Dechaineux Lecture Theatre

RSVP / Contact

All current students and members of the public welcome

Chris – cat leap – Abbey Road. Photograph courtesy of Andy Day, 2012. Reproduced with permission.

Reflections on the geohumanities – or how the arts influence my geographical practice

Elaine Stratford is Professor in the Institute for the Study of Social Change, University of Tasmania. Her research is motivated by trying to understand the conditions in which people flourish in place, in their movements, in daily life, and over the life-course. Much of that work is informed by “collaborative conversations” with the visual arts and the archive.

‘As an undergraduate, my decision to combine art history and theory and geography was often met with quizzical looks, but my choice to work in the geohumanities is one I have never regretted. In this Forum, I want to share some of the ways in which the geohumanities has informed and enriched my work. In particular, I want to show how photography, film, painting, and performance have informed my work. My intention is to share a story about how I came to write about the geographies of the life-course, and I will do that by reference to Lennart Nilsson’s images of fetuses for Life Magazine; William McTaggart’s large oil paintings of children at the shore; Nic Low’s installations about island children at Junction Arts festival; Lottie Child’s UK films of youth at play and Andy Day’s photographs of London’s traceurs practicing parkour; John Brack’s genius summation of adult commuter life in Collins Street 5pm; promotional images of Ernestine Shepherd, a septuagenarian body sculptor; and Pharmacopeia, an installation by Susie Freeman, David Critchley, and Dr Liz Lee subtitled Cradle to Grave. My aims are to show how the arts have enriched my spatial thinking; to suggest that geographical modes of conceiving and perceiving the world can powerfully contribute to artistic endeavour; and to hint at the benefits to be gained by the disciplines from more collaborative conversations and projects—particularly those that support people to flourish.’ Elaine Stratford 2018.

Image Credit: Chris – cat leap – Abbey Road. Photograph courtesy of Andy Day, 2012. Reproduced with permission.

Arts Forum is a weekly series of free public lectures held at the School of Creative Arts and Media, Hunter Street Campus, during the semester. The series provides a unique opportunity to hear local, national and international visiting artists, scholars and presenters from diverse sectors of the Creative Arts discuss their area of professional practice. All current students, prospective students, and members of the public are welcome.