Final 500 words on Field

Overall, my 2nd field project was the most influential to not only my practical work but also my written work. Although, there was no physical skill based learning involved ‘Art & the Conscious mind really helped me to be more mentally involved in my work and also helped with the theme of my dissertation. The mental link between artist and art is something I became interested in during college. The process from thought to physical is intriguing. The fact that material can be manipulated by the hand of the artist to show a specific concept is something that I have just begun to want to really understand.

In terms of my own work, the question ‘where does the end?’ has allowed me to think about how much of myself goes into making my artwork. The textiles process is something I believe allows you to really be involved with the direct relation between my hands and the material. I feel I can really convey myself through the work that goes into stitching and pinning. This very physical and direct hand to material relationship allows a very personal thing to be made. I also feel like the time it takes to create a textiles piece is important because you are giving up time in your life to create something. This is an argument I explore in my dissertation proposal and something I will be continuing with in terms or art and craft.

Art & the Conscious Mind also led me to think about inanimate objects and how spiritual some things can be. The idea that natural things can give off certain types of energies is something that I belief myself (and my artwork always stems from me). This is something that I applied to the sketch below doing the workshop. The idea of colours representing auras or even the ‘multi selves’ we have been talking about is something that I really like. The idea of ‘multi selves’ is also intriguing to me because of my de ja vu but also because I am a believer of alternate universes. If I had not experienced a certain thing in my life, would I be a completely different person?

I feel that the my first Field topic was a waste of my time because the only thing I learnt from it was that I did not want to do anything to do with ecological materials. None of my ideas or sketches I had during this topic were things that I wanted to explore or continue with. Words I remember being used the most are hemp and lime and I’m still unsure of what the difference between them is. I feel that some of the workshops were not planned very well. A lot of things were repeated more then twice and people started to not show up making it very difficult to work in a group. I completely preferred Art & the Conscious Mind because all the sessions felt very planned and well thought out and it was a very independent, reflective topic that helped me a lot with my subject work, I was able to take a lot from it.

FIELD – Art & the Conscious Mind

Part 3 – Self Awareness

In yesterday’s lecture, Rob took us through many theories about our self awareness/consciousness. Questions that we went through in the last lecture resurfaced like where to locate the self aware mind and is it that we just have the one self or multiple? Rob went through the idea of multiple selves in more detail and gave us the idea of when too mirrors are facing each other; infinite mirrors, infinite minds. Can we be aware of ourselves being aware of our self?

I think that we can. From an artist perspective, artwork is a reaction to us being aware of ourselves, this is especially the case for self portraits. If I was to paint a exact portrait of myself, this would show how I am aware of my physical self, however, if I was to create a more abstract piece of work that represents my ‘self’ this is showing I am aware of all the things that create my ‘self’. For example, Tracey Emin’s bed tells a story of her history, experiences and reveals the emotions she was feeling at the time through the objects she has chosen to be a part of the work. They are not just physical things but are a symbol for an emotion or experience.

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FIELD – Art & the Conscious Mind

Surrealist Games Workshop with Theo Humphries

The aim of this workshop was to look at the interaction between different modes of consciousness. I did not particularly enjoy this workshop and did not get anything out of it. I feel this is because the surrealist games had the opposite effect on me. Where I feel like they were supposed to get us thinking more freely I became extremely aware of the drawings I was producing as I was out of my comfort zone; I don’t like drawing from the imagination in a group situation. Outside of the games, I found myself doodling in my sketchbook more throughout this workshop but this was more to do with my subject work. It was good fun and I can see how these kind of games would help other people but they were not for me.

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FIELD – Art & the Conscious Mind

‘Labyrinth’ Workshop – Artwork Participation

{videos to be uploaded}

I found this workshop really interesting in terms of what I was writing about yesterday after Rob’s lecture; about how people can experience pieces of artwork differently and take different things away from it. I’d like to talk about this artwork as if it had a self. If it’s an embodiment of a self the same question are posed; where does it start/end? Where are it’s boundaries? Are there boundaries between it’s concept and physical elements? (Internal and external).

I found that the piece, for me, hasn’t ended. I went through experiencing it, then talking about it as a group afterwards, talking about it outside of the workshop hours with other students and now I am writing about it again. Also, having experienced it, is it not now a part of my ‘self’?

People in the discussion said they felt that the piece was very controlling in terms of their reactions and how they felt towards it but I don’t feel this is particularly true. This is because it is quite a simple piece, consisting of light and fabric, and it is our ‘selves’ that would control our reaction towards it. Light and fabric would remind different people of different things.

For me, this certain combination of light and fabric reminded me of a waterfall. This slight hint of blue in the lights and the ripples of the fabric made me feel really calm and self aware. After a while I started to ignore the other people around me and was submerged in lines and ripples. As more people started to leave and I was the last person in the artwork, laying on the floor, just breathing this only enhanced my self-awareness.

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FIELD – Art & the Conscious Mind

Part 2 – Where is the conscious mind?

Having missed last weeks lecture and workshop, I spent the week going through the slides Rob sent us in order to catch up. I agree with one of the points made in Rob’s PowerPoint; that “everything is conscious” in terms of time and things being present and this is something that stood out to me during this PowerPoint.

Having gone through the PowerPoint and having some basic understanding as to what the conscious mind is allowed me to keep up to date with yesterday’s lecture. Many of my notes are things that stuck out to me during the lecture but I had some views on some of the points made.

Overall, the lecture made my thoughts linger on the sentence “you are not your brain”. This reminded me of RE lessons and different arguments for the ‘soul’. If we are not our brain then we can imagine our ‘self’ as a almost like an orb/aura that stays around our bodies, then when this embodiment of us dies it is easy to believe in some kind of reincarnation (Buddhism). This is especially true for me because I suffer with de ja vu on multiple occasions. This could also be linked with some of the quantum physics points Rob was talking about but, honestly, I got a little lost at that point.

When covering the views on where the ‘self’ ends, I started to think about how actions and things we put in the world can be remembered so is this idea of a ‘soul’ exists then parts of the soul would be in the things we put into the world and how other people and there souls react to us and this adds to their ‘self’. I feel that artwork is a powerful example of this because an artist takes the time to create this extensions of themself, most of the time based on their views, emotions and experiences (what can made the ‘self’. This piece of work/self is then put into the world for someone else to experience, take in and add whatever they took from that certain piece of work to their ‘self’.

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