failure, language, collaboration: some thoughts on Scanlon & Grivell

a few thoughts that i take away after Claire Scanlon and Paul Grivell’s engaging lecture last monday night.

failure: the relationship of failure and risk taking with the process of exploration and discovery. scanlon and grivell expose ‘failure’ in their towner ‘failure’ project where unsuccessful proposals and works are laid bare – collected and published in a zine and exhibition. ‘failure’ – usually either buried or packaged as some kind of  ‘success’, raises questions about value, judgement and possibly ego.   

language and meaning: exploring, as they did in many ways, the ways text, language and meaning relate to each other resonated and reminded me of some work i made, but perhaps never explored fully, about the nature of language and meaning. in this piece i started with a single word and found all possible words that could substitute the word like a thesaurus. from these words i did likewise and so the meaning of the original word branched out in meaning like a tree, sometimes far removed from the original word and its meaning, sometimes doubling back on itself to its original word and meaning. while i have gone down other routes since this work, perhaps it could be relevant to work i have been doing about the irish constitution and its wording – as a text, a meaning and an interpretation. 

collaborative practice: it seems fitting that their collaborative practice often focuses on language, meaning and communication also, definitely a path to unknown and unimagined, new places. perhaps could be an important part of my professional practice plan and factored in as a way to broaden my focus sometimes. 

link to their presentation:

thank you so much Claire and Paul


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