Icons of Oil: The Photographer-Researcher and Collaborative Practice

  • Author / Creator
    Lozowy, Andriko J
  • This thesis is a multi-modal exploration of the photographer-researcher as a methodological opportunity to gain multiple, collaborative and collective perspectives on living in relation to the Alberta oil sands zone of North America. Using participatory-photography with youth, this thesis is one part of a larger project that explores notions of ‘community building’ in Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada. Through the camera lenses of the photographer-researcher (myself), and youth-participants this place is seen in relation to the Athabasca Tar Sands and oil industry landscapes in the practices of photographers such as Burtynsky, Essik, Lenz and myself. Fieldwork was conducted relying on cameras and images from my photographic practice and from participants that collaborated in a community-based process to produce representations of place over two years (2009-2011, As a form of visual ethnography, youth were asked to respond to the question ‘Where is Fort McMurray?’ with cameras, a process that generated temporary community formations around practices of image making. This thesis represents a series of collaborative and negotiated engagements from a number of perspectives resulting in a collective body of work in dialogue with relationships of people and the Alberta oil industry zones.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2013
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Siemens, Elena (Modern Languages and Cultural Studies)
    • Szeman, Imre (English and Film Studies)
    • Shields, Rob (Sociology)
    • Dorow, Sara (Sociology)