In this thesis, I investigate the life and death of Christopher McCandless, who ventured into the Alaskan wilderness in 1992 and died. McCandless’s story became the subject of Jon Krakauer’s 1996 novel Into the Wild and Sean Penn’s 2007 feature film of the same name. A deeper inquiry demands that we take into account the reverberations of McCandless’s journey in the lives of those who undertake to recreate the original sequence of events that lead to McCandless’s death. Using the followers’ re-creations, I direct my argument towards a framework that is constructed holistically around McCandless’s actions. This preliminary stance leads to a two-folded analysis: First, I leverage the terms wilderness, escapism, belonging, and home to better understand an individual’s relationship to identity formation in the US and the West; second, I assert the actions of McCandless and his followers raise essential philosophical questions concerning the ideas of being, place, and home.
Uten tittel (Mount Everest), 2012, Exhibition view from Haugesund Billedgalleri.
Part of the Vestlandsutstillingen NearFar 2013.
Haugesund Kunstforening, Haugesund: 08.02. – 03.03.
Sogn og Fjordane Kunstmuseum, Førde: 09.03 – 02.04.
Stavanger Kunstforening, Stavanger: 11.04 – 01.05.
Kunsthuset Kabuso, Øystese: 11.05. – 02.06.
Kunstmuseet Kube, Ålesund: 08.06. – 30.06.