Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Communications and Arts


Faculty of Education and Arts

First Advisor

Dr Nicola Kaye

Second Advisor

Dr Christopher Crouch


This research investigates psychological ideas of the interior self as transient and its relationship to the Real within a creative practice that includes video, projection and animation. The significance of the research is in the critical development of my creative practice and its creative outcome as a means of visually manifesting ideas of the interior self as explored by the theorist Slavoj Zizek. Theoretically, the notion of the interior self is defined as a transient state of co-existing contradictions. Its definition is located in Zizek’s reading of Jacques Lacan’ s triad of orders that comprise the thinking self (Zizek, 2007a, p. 8). In Zizek, the interior self is positioned at the interstice between the Real and the Symbolic orders (Myers, 2003), hovering between life and death, absence and presence, here and not here, interior and exterior, real and not real.

In positioning the self in this manner, the inter-relationship of the Symbolic order and the order of the Real (Zizek, 1989, p. 191-192) is discussed with reference to the uncanny, extimacy and the gaze, and thus situate my creative work. Using the film theory of Kate Mondloch (2007; 2010) and with reference to Todd McGowan (2007) and Patrick Fuery (2000), I investigate the immersive or experiential possibilities of creative work in generating an inter-relationship between the work and the viewer, and thereby reveal the notion of the interior self as transient. It is within the reflexive praxis model (Crouch, 2007; 2012) that the critical examination unfolds. The investigation of works by artists who influence my practice, such as Anna Gaskell, Bill Viola, Mike Parr and Robbie Cooper are essential in further developing this approach and provide examples for this analysis. My creative work is reflexively examined in relation to various exhibitions held throughout my candidature. Ultimately, this research examines the notion of the interior self and the lost Real that defines it as transient, through a reflexive creative praxis, both in the content of the work, the medium of video, animation and projection, and in its relationship to viewer.

Beijing_train_ride.mp4 (165436 kB)
Stella.mp4 (12008 kB)
Steve.mp4 (18083 kB)
Erin.mp4 (20699 kB)
Untitled.mp4 (11986 kB)
Clouds.mp4 (9539 kB)
Dis_Integrate_animation.mp4 (67848 kB)
Domestic_Rooms_I.mp4 (45343 kB)
Bridge_Rooms_II.mp4 (11494 kB)
Transience_walk_through.mp4 (101596 kB)
Hallway _Rooms_III.mp4 (22359 kB)
Stairs_I_Rooms_IV.mp4 (33115 kB)
Stairs_II_Rooms_V.mp4 (28778 kB)