exploratory project (week 1): beginning

week 1, beginning: beginning a new project; an ‘exploratory project’ to challenge, take risks, experiment, reflect on successes and failures… making a plan.


a project outline: answering some questions to give some kind of shape to my research and making; a place to start and a pace to work.

what are my starting points: broadly speaking; movement, place / space and gender. too broad. more specifically – look at landscape in relation to gender / gender identity.  gendered landscape is a new starting point and focus for my work although landscape has been less directly part of my work in terms of body and movement. since my ‘form, fracture, frame’ task i have been curious about where some of the experiments lead me, in particular the short video piece ‘kathleen’ which made reference to kathleen ni houlihan as a female personification of nation and its landscape. this might be a more specific starting point: ‘kathleen’: a series of explorations responding to the notion of a gendered landscape, past and present.

what am I curious about?: conceptually – i am curious about how landscape relates to the female body (movement and form) and female identity. i am curious about how a romanticised landscape relates to a real and contemporary landscape. processes and materially – i am curious about movement and the landscape and the role walking now plays in my work; as a part of my process, as the work in itself, as a way of engaging and working with others? i am curious about how my lens based processes and methods of capture (video and photography) could relate to object and print/image based work. i wonder if this could be a challenge and risk…. to let lens based work inform object and print/image based work in some way or vice versa? maybe i need to work out if i have really left object based work behind and if i haven’t – what are its possibilities for developing my work .

what are my strategies?: research and reading: read texts related theory, history, geography, philosophy etc about a gendered landscape, where possible in an irish context. research archives related to landscape and gender – the national archives, personal family archives, contemporary and current news stories. research making: respond to the contemporary landscape through body and movement, respond to issues that arise through research in the contemporary landscape through body and movement. begin lens based processes to facilitate and capture movement and landscape. develop work from the lens based work that is object or print/image based work – this again could be the challenge and risk…. developing lens based work to object and form. explore at least one new way of working – either a collaboration or a new process or material.

what are my personal risks?: responding to the landscape and work made outdoors and in public spaces always feels like a huge risk against the privacy of making work in the studio. choosing a new starting point (gendered landscape) to begin to make work is also a carries risk as an unknown territory, especially as gender can lead to binary demarcations and debate, all of which i am uncertain about what i will discover. as a new focus and starting point i have also no idea if it will sustain my curiosity sufficiently or lead down another direction, or indeed lead to too much research reading rather than research making. in terms of processes, developing new ways to work from lens based work, such as object or print/image based work, is unsettling to my dematerialised sensibilities.

what challenges do I anticipate?: finding a ‘hook’ to sustain curiosity, experimentation and new ways of working. finding sufficient time to experiment, to resolve, to research – to delve deep. finding some kind of dynamic or tension in the work that provokes questions rather than answers, maybe even contradictions.

a list of risks and challenges:

a new focus: ‘gendered landscape’ … a more specific starting point to be decided.

new processes: lens-based processes leading to object and print/image based work. dematerialised work becoming materialised in some way.

new direction or sequence of working: reverse or interrupt my usual order in the ways i work, i.e. landscape and movement leading to lens based work then possibly object could be reversed or interrupted. i could start with object or print/image leading to lens based work to movement to landscape?

new processes: attempt at lease one totally new way of working, i am curious about sound. i am curious about language, word, text (maybe poetry).

new collaboration: maybe work with others in some capacity, if only for one experiment and see what happens.

again, all very broad and needs to be more specific.


outline plan: who knows what pace and direction will take but here is a plan to react against or scrap altogether.

week 1: generate ideas, make outline plan.

week 2: begin research reading; texts related to gendered landscape, decide and outline first experiment / exploration.

week 3 & 4: make / do first experiment / exploration (lens based leading to object based). tutorial re PPP

week 5: reflect on first experiment. continue research reading, decide and outline second experiment / exploration. tutorial with tutor and visiting lecturer 

week 6 & 7: make / do second experiment / exploration (perhaps reverse order to object based leading to lens based).

week 8: reflect on second experiment. continue research reading, decide and outline third experiment / exploration.

week 9 & 10: make / do third experiment / exploration (perhaps to include a new process). make sure you have arranged a group crit.

week 11: reflect on third experiment. continue research reading, decide and outline forth experiment / exploration

week 12: (full week off) make and do forth experiment (perhaps to include a new collaboration).

week 13:  reflect on forth experiment and on all experiments and explorations.

i’m not sure what way my work will develop pace wise or direction wise so i may well look back on this project outline plan as irrelevant and make a new one. the main thing is that i start somewhere and keep it moving at a pace that allows me to take on new challenges and risks, as they emerge related to the work rather than as something to tick… i’m sure all will become clearer once i start. at least this is a start.

 

 

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