Art of Personal identity.

The following account is based on Derek Parfit theory of identity known as the teletransportation paradox. Parfit being the master of the art of personal identity par excellence.

  • Personal identity suggests the same person who begins the art work project is the same person who finished the artwork, therefore the author of the artwork .
  • Personal identity suggests travel over distance entails the sameness of identity at the beginning to end.
  • These accounts suggest a philosophical bias to the ego theory of what it is to be a person.

Ego theory verses Bundle theory

  • person persists as a mental thing- a soul, or spirit
  • a person is a material thing but has a supervening series of mental states or events- a person, social identity.

Art object as ego or bundle theory

  • art object as contingent on either a soul/spirit or a series of mental events
  • art object persists as a reflection of a soul so exists as a statement of soul
  • art object persists as a social event attributed to a persons life phase

Artist belief and unbelief

Suppose an artist entered a workshop sealed off from any outside interference as an artist pod. The artist then presses a button that sets off a quantum scanner that records all brain states and cellular structure attributed to the creative process. The belief is a new art project. Hopefully, an outcome will be an artwork to be exhibited at a central gallery. Your choice as an artist is to either believe in the ego theory or bundle theory. You begin to work on the block of marble.

Thought experiment

However, unbeknown to the artist a replica of that artist , the scan produces a replica. Replica begins at the same instant in another art pod at the opposite pole position on earth. The outcome of the resultant artworks is identical in all visible respects. Question being , can an artwork be ascribed to one and only one artist? (The account is a reworking of the teletransportation paradox thought experiment)

Comparing the ego theory to bundle theory as to teletransportation paradox.

  • ego theorist might say there are two bodies but one original ego/soul.
  • therefore one artwork attributed to one and only on ego/soul
  • bundle theorist might say, there are to identical sets of physical and mental process.
  • therefore there must be two artworks attributed to two sets of physical/mental process operating in distinct spacial categories.

Will the artwork be yours?

So on the first account the artwork must be yours. There would be no doubt of originality that even if the two works had been swapped by the gallery staff. However on the second account it becomes less clear. Arguably there are two distinct artworks that look the same but attributed to distinct persons with their reasons.

Tropical art practices.

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Is there such activity as ‘TROPICAL ART PRACTICES”? This article makes a case that if there is a unique feature to the art practice that makes it distinct, it might reside in what loosely might be the ‘lifestyle tropical.’ However, it’s a vague claim, but with analysis, a couple of conclusions are argued. Its how the artist might interact their practice with the wet and dry climatic conditions. It might be something to do with a conscious qualitative sense of place. 

Accumulations: dry tropical and wet tropical

Methodology for tropical accumulations

Tropical art practices include:

  • duration art is exposed to the particular locale.
  • exposure to fungi, ants, bugs, bird scat, rain, sun, spider webs.
  • inorganic as in common earth elements.
  • Cracking of paint.
  • warping of the frame
  • Expansion of paint and contraction

Between the wet and dry tropics.

This involves an authentic interaction through relocation. So the properties of a region takes on the properties of another region.

How this plays out on object art.

A non-human intentional state might be a green ant removing bits of the artwork for their purpose. The spider in need of a support. This might be a syncretic emergent form. Its a from of binary intentional agency. The human as a conceptual schema agent, the non human as a meta conceptual agent.

Site, processes and philosophy

Natural exposure for tropical art practices.

The site is the Cassowary coast, Hull river national park region. Artworks are left exposed to the natural elements as an outdoor art practice. It could be a day or for a number of month. A partial cover is placed through the tropical monsoon season. The short film gaze on nature gives an indication of this process.

Philosophical issues

The art of the rational intuition is an attempt to capture both the structural as well as anarchic elements of human intentional agency. The intentional upon the material artwork has a rational sense. This is so of the arts in general. However substance based form requires a methodological modernist consumeristic approach. The use of paraphanalia blends the rational ability to select based on normative considerations. Intuition uses a sense of purpose and reference of interpretation. Its a vague intentional act. The futile attempt to give voice to a obscure ostensible referent being the artwork.

Mixed media tropical art practices

Substance verses property based media.

Mixed media substance dualism is derived from philosophical mind/body dualism. This is a proxy for placing radically distinct substance together. Another sense of the association is that consciousness inhabits the media, or fragments of the artists intentional states. Though for the philosophical materialist the substance based mixed media might composed of combinations of media that defy normative notions of art.

Art practices with normative properties

A simple normative property based mixed media would be the traditional canvas with oil paint that is not normally considered mixed media. Another might be a photographic print on distinct paper types.

Tropical art practices with substance logics

A substance based approach to mixed media could be embedding a fine art print into fibreglass. Then by covering it with a resin the object photo is a unified interactive substance. This concept is akin to mind/body dualism of the Cartesian variety. However the mind body problem posses the logical fallacy. This is because non physical substance cannot logically interact with physical substances. The implication for mixed media methodology is that the substances may not interact and so fall apart. This cutting edge level of experiment is therefore contingent on supervening factors.

Syncretic gnostic emergent art.

Tropical art practices and syncretism

The essential shift in consciousness is one I noticed in the `1970’s at Mission beach while on a fruit orchard property. Jack Hare and his wife lived on the property at Bingal Bay. He lived what I now consider the idyllic tropical lifestyle. That is, his English ways had transformed in ways of syncretic naturalism. His skin was tawny and brown. Even in summer, he would swim in the ocean each day despite the danger of marine stingers. It was as if the tropics were reflected in the lived experience through form and action.

A Tropical Sublime Gnostic

Firstly there is some notion of a Tropical living experience. It is about tangible interconnecting lifestyles. People exist in distinct geopolitical tropical zones. This sense of an interpersonal phenomenology of being in a tropical zone becomes sublime since it transcends normative accounts of beauty. At the core, it is a sublime that straddles the tropical humidity and heat that transcend the modernist determinants of culture. This gnostic sense of what it is like to be a form of life possibly gives to a tropical art practice style. Its authenticity over the representational modes or learned methodology.

Emergent conceptualism, intuitional logics.

Probably best to begin with what is meant by intuitional logic. Formal logics deal with deductive and inductive logic. So of the superficial form: All men are mortal. Socrates is a man. Therefore Socrates is mortal. Intuitional logic would not disagree with this logic. However, the conclusion, according to intuition, may come to be Socrates is immortal. The premises true but with an absurd conclusion. However, absurdity may indicate a genuine philosophical problem.

Expressionistic tropical experimentation

This may be a non-rational logic and so non-scientific or mathematical in structure. Nevertheless, it is a sense of primordialism based on deep humanism. The absurd that forms the basis for the emergent conceptualism of going tropical is the sense of impulsive rationalism. The concept ’emergent’ fails to gain traction in the world of functionalism—however, it is the basis for forms of expressionistic experimentation that lead to vistas of possibilities.


Arid climb

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

General overview of artwork.

A robust weighty two sided artwork. Arid Climb Side A: Multiple layers of paint, putty, fabric and resin on a steel framed fibre glass plate. The human outline abstract form has as its torso a resin covered print. This is a photograph depicting a palm trunk. There is a vague outline of a rope that attaches to a climber which happens to be the producer of this work. Hence the Text on the left side: CLIMB.

Arid Climb Side B: The outline of vintage farm machine (photographic fabric print) is covered with various painterly pigments. It varies from oils and acyrilics, fabric paints and ink. The resin covered images are that of termit mound and the edge of a small town in arid zone of Queensland (Almaden).

About observing place

Arid climb is in part to do with palm climbing, and the nature of the dry tropical zone. Its part of a series about the arid region of Queensland. Another artwork explores mining relics. The embedded features are three photographic prints. Themes being to do with movement by way of vegetative, human and insectoid.

About two side artworks

Modes of representation

There is a rationale to producing content of similar quality on both sides a plate. Firstly its about taking advantage of the material properties of the medium which is a fibre glass core. Secondly its about semantic content. The references which are hidden from view. Thirdly there is a painterly sculptural element to the construction. I find that fusing these elements together fits well for syncretic gnostic artforms.

Side A. Arid climb. Under arch Side A. Arid Open wetland forest.  Cassowary coastSide A. Arid climb. pen wetland forest.  Cassowary coastSide A. Arid climb. Under arch Side A. Arid climb. Under arch Side view. Arid climbSide B. Arid climb. Open wetland forest.  Cassowary coastSide B. Arid climb. Open wetland forest.  Cassowary coastSide B. Arid climb. Open wetland forest.  Cassowary coastSide B. Arid climb. Open wetland forest.  Cassowary coast

Dream power

Side A.  Full view. Side A.  questioning power. Side A. Bottom rightSide A.  close up

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

The power to dream

Telecommunications infrastructure suggests imagination. Side A has at its top-left a communications tower. A form moves in the direction of the building, possibly on a quest. Is it to find answers to existential questions? Who knows? There is the power of human communication. There is power through advanced digital infrastructure—dream on in mixed media.

Dreams and power

If the conclusion is to dream-on, it begs the question. What is a dream anyway? It may well be the walking state. It is the depiction on the bottom right of side A that completes the arc. The doll figure on the side of a dirt road (embedded photo print) along a hardly used road suggests the dream-like quality. There is also a reference to imagined community. This is fairly relevant given the rise of a new rules based society

Photographic elemental forms

Dream power as a photographic elemental. Taking a leaf out of a Gerry Badger’s notes as a photographer.

The photographer creates or describes a dance with space and time.

Contemporary photographers: editors, George Walsh, Colin Naylor, Micheal Held

This quote’s relevance, based on travel, suggests to capture the shots, there is human movement as an outdoor art form. So they travel up a mountain and to remote locations. Badger notes a physical connection to the subject. It seems ordinary in 2021, but Badger made this note in the early last century.


Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Stamp state dry tropical

A steel framed with fibre glass core suitable for being hung outdoors. There are depictions on both sides so open spaces such as archways give optimal perspectives. The name STATE STAMP references the mining Battery Stamp as well as its historical connotation to the dry tropical mining in the region.

Compositional features.

Printed fabric of photographs (as object photos) of the battery stamp are printed on fabric then sewn onto the fibre glass core. An image of the battery stamp cut out of lino then covered in layered resin forms a resemblance of the relic. Wire hoops are embedded into the fibre glass. Steel rods are threaded through all four sides to create a fixed armature. After the rods are in place soft tissue fibre glass is embedded between the rods and print which is then hardened with resin and layered with paints and clear casting resin.

Thematic correlations.

Relation to the dry tropics, North Queensland.

The notion of dry tropical art is implicit within the works. The colours resemble the grasses of the dryer region. A tiny photograph print is embedded near the figure to resemble a hidden element to mining enterprise. The Battery Stamp forms part of a series that explores the relation of the ‘will to power’. Philosophically, State Stamp forms a personal endurance, relating to globalization and its discontents.

State Stamp as a art historical reference.

The story of the battery stamp being carted over the ranges begins as part of my traveling muse artworks series. The settler culture from Europe and Asia came to make their fortune at sites like the Palmer River, however it was John Moffatt brought in heavy equipment such as the Battery Stamp. This has a reference to dry tropical mining in that the set and setting is established in a ecosystem.

This became the mining empire near Irvinebank that was latter bought by the Queensland Government after Moffits retirement.

Angor to Zillmanton: stories of North Queensland’s deserted towns by Colin Hooper
  • Side A, hanging perspective.
    Side A, hanging perspective.


Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Selection of object photography for a mixed media project.

The philosophic side for object photography

Object photography as a token.

There is an overview in OUTDOOR ART for a philosophical primer, which discusses general philosophy concerning art. It’s from an existential sense that the object photograph acts as a token to type relationship. The image token has ostensible properties. That is, the image links to a type of point of view. Object photography is that portion of some larger picture that is rationally selected by the person/photographer. 

Object photography self reference paradox.

The philosophical point is the photographer is part of the picture, although not visible. Significantly, it’s the content that exists as a binary of self and not-self—a classic self-reference paradox. The action of capturing a scene indicates the photographer becoming a possibility. What the photographer is not can never be apart from a particular point of view.

Fellow man! Your whole life, like a sandglass, will always be reversed and will ever run out again

Friedrich Nietzsche

The photo is like a time slice of the whole field; returning to the image, it’s like turning the sandglass. The event runs out again but in a diminished or dramatic form depending on the image and viewer.

The photographic styles for mixed media.

1.Straight style in mixed media.

  • keep the subject as primary focus, avoid cluttered surrounds.
  • clean execution for detail.
  • Natural elements, like a building, frame subject for additional focus.
  • F16-22 for in focus depth of field.

An adequate shutter speed and depth of field for sharpness and clean edges for the frame and subject having a counterbalance are depictions of the classic or straight style.

Subject of image being the shades on the water makes the image a straight styleSubject positioned from top section and its imposing content.The straight style is the sole figure clearly stands out from the dark into the sunset gives its strength as a subject.. Clearly the strong subject is this illuminated urban colonial Flight of birds if clearly captured is an excellent example of the straight style. The solitary subject surrounded by space on a line.Three elements are clearly separated to mark a straight style. Action shot of bird stands out.Subject is clearly defined. The old and new urban architecture with negative space in a flat perspective for a straight style. The small cluster of rock and sea expanse to the island has al sense of proportionality.

All above images are the photography of IZ. Giardina

Add complexity through layers.

The binary builds meaningful relations for maximizing semantic contrasts. This layered binary style fits well with representing relationships. The first is a natural color binary of shade and light, the next being industry and nature serving industry demarked by rail lines. The contrast of a super wide-angle shot of a sunset with a tiny fuel tank jutting from the darkness as the simplicity of a structural intrusive—the relations urban grand buildings as a binary with the street light at night. Birds hold a binary with their surroundings through the flight and by perching as observers of nature and humanism. The slideshow above indicates the straight style composition as minimalist.

2. Layers in photography for mixed media

It is through layers within photography that can drive a complex narrative. This style works well within mixed media artwork. The photography for mixed media enables the use of this style of photography. 

  • Focus through glass for reflection of a person walking past correlated with the non reflective image behind the glass.
  • Focus through a grid or lines of wire.
  • A puddle after the rain acts as a reflective layer.
  • Objects such as cars in traffic as block objects layer abstraction.
  • Binary layering for mixed media
    Binary layering for mixed media

Object photography within the mixed media.

One method is to prepare a tonal background. When dry, then add more complexity, so the printed image stands out. Another methodology would be to place the print and build up from that thematic referential point. Where both methods converge is the intentional use of variable media.

3. Dramatic object photography for mixed media

The object in the photo should in this sense create some kind of tension that resonates with the mixed media. Whereas the other style main focus is on the aesthetics of elements. A subtle shift may be due to subject having a social dimension that through composition gives a dynamic message.

Dramatic geometric optics.

The nifty 50mm focal length is the choice documentary lens and ideal for the straight and layering street shooting styles. Photography with this focal length means little optical distortion if the picture is at least f11. It’s great to shoot with a prime lens, for it means any geometric effects are true to that focal length. The super wide-angle stretch space while the super-telephoto compresses or flattens space. Using objects with the optics to match can give radical interpretations of the thing photographed.

  • Mixed media photography with a dramatic edge as a stand off.
    Mixed media photography with a dramatic edge as a stand off.

Object photography placement in mixed media.

Methods to enhance photography

The use of resin in mixed media for optical effects.

There are two approaches to enhance a photography print. Firstly, build up gradually layer by layer a mound of resin. Then place the image on the top covered with a thin layer. Objects can be placed within the resin so further developing a sense of 3D perspective. Secondly, there is the method of laying the print down and building layers of resin over the image. The process creates an optical magnification of the print. This style works well to create a focal point of the entire mixed media composition.

The selection of black and white photography over colour.

The first choice is to use black and white prints. This choice is because the color may fade or change. Black and white images are graphic representations and so stand out within a complicated composition. However, color can be the right choice so long as the inks are of high quality.

Embedding the image so to build up a block of resin.

This technique isolates the image print. There are various methods used for this process as follows.

  • Lino block that is cut out so to embed the image.
  • Use air dry clay to build up around the image.
  • Putty can be used though needs to hardened by adding resin.
  • Rolled cloth or paper adhered to surface.
  • embed objects within resin as an added feature.

The series of images below printed with variable levels of resin poured over the print. The properties allow for a plethora of symbolic possibilities that can inform the painting as a whole or in part.

  • Resin layers built up in multiple stages to magnify camel legs that are situated under a lino cut.
    Resin layers built up in multiple stages to magnify camel legs that are situated under a lino cut.

Painterly effects that blend with surrounding media.

This method, if used with care, can bring incredible detail to the photo print. However, it works well with abstracts with distinctive spaces. Oils are preferable, given there is no absorption into the paper.