Date of Award


Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA)


Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA)

First Supervisor

Dr Chris Crouch

Second Supervisor

Dr Maggie Phillips


One of the greatest accessible records of trace and the past is the landscape, which over time acts as a repository of evidence from natural forces and things that humans have created or changed. This thesis considers trace as material and nonmaterial evidence, remnants, marks, vestiges of events past and forgotten or remembered. How can a past that is evidenced only by its traces be read within a landscape context by disciplines of knowledge production? The subsequent interpretation, generation of meaning and understanding of traces contributes to the knowledge, mythology and perceptions of reality for differing groups in different places. At the same time this research considers my own arts practice, paintings which are derived from a unique process of casting various found surfaces (wood, metal, brick, etc) and extracting the ‘traces’ in acrylic paint, removing and transferring a thin layer of the original surface material which may or may not be reworked further. The paintings, from the environment of a bygone time, remind us of what we see and yet often may not notice. They invite us to consider our relationship to a past from which we may have become alienated. ‘Trace’ connects ‘lived’ time, the past, with ‘physical’ time, the present. Traces invite us to contemplate the ephemeral quality of time and consider the synergy of time continuum – the connection of past and present – and in so doing compel us to consider the question of the future.