Landscapes of desire: the contemporary tourist: photographic performances, the camera and place

Catherine Laudenbach

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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This thesis examines through practice based visual creative research two places called Hallstatt. One is a fifth century town in Austria and the other the recently built copy Hallstatt See in Southern China. The two places have been variously identified together using terms such as clone, copy, duplicate and fake.
Most existing written scholarship has focused solely on the acceptance of the two places as copies, not questioning whether these two places are indeed copies or whether a new terminology or framework should be invented to describe both their relationship to each other and the behaviour of the tourists within these places.
The thesis uses visual photographic imagery as the framework to analyse the two places and their relationship to each other as copies to investigate beyond written words and physical, political and economic comparisons of place. The research aims, through creative practice, to produce new understandings and new knowledge about the nature of the contemporary copied landscape through photographic research.
The research draws from the theoretical considerations of Sigmund Freud, Walter Benjamin, Jean Baudrillard and Michel Foucault. Concepts including heterotopic space, the familiar and unfamiliar, simulacra and the photographic copy are developed into a methodology through thematised immersion and analysis, drawn from the writings of Australian academics Ross Gibson, Jeff Malpas and Paul Carter. The research also developed from the physical embodied process of combining being a tourist with a researcher, creating the concept of being a tourreseacher with a camera.
Contemporary tourists in Hallstatt See are pictured using photography, creating and recording their own new authentic narratives of place. The research reveals, in Hallstatt See China, a place that is both familiar and unfamiliar, an inversion of the original Hallstatt as a new place in a new time.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Charles Sturt University
  • Wood, Susan, Principal Supervisor
  • Holcombe, James, Principal Supervisor
  • Woodward, Margaret, Advisor
  • Bremner, Craig, Advisor
  • Charles, Cassily, Advisor
Award date10 Dec 2017
Place of PublicationAustralia
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2017

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