Through art practice, how might collaboratively improvised poetic documentary developed into a reflexive space of encounter as video installation create, for a viewer, the imagining of new spaces of social interaction.
This subject is investigated by exploring the following questions through making two art works, and developing a scenario for the artworks encounter with a public:
How is chance and the contingency of everyday reality brought into art practice? In what ways might art practice engage chance and the contingent in creating specific stagings of spaces for viewer-participant-artist interaction?
How might collaborative processes of art-making and exhibiting be understood as theatrical, and as a new form of carnival?
How can reflexivity in art practice, in the consciousness of the circuit of looks between artist, subject, artwork and viewer, open up a space of encounter that is both public and private?
How can this reflexive exchange of looks enable_new processes of identification, and the imagining of other realities?
My key aims are to develop three projects; two art works (the video installations Echo and The Pickers) and, thirdly, a methodology for the dissemination of these artworks.
Through these three projects I will explore the research questions by creating scenarios involving the actual and the displaced experiences of place and distance. For the artist, participant and viewer, these experiences of place - of belonging or of feeling an outsider - create an interplay of realities and fantasies, empathy and identification. The three projects will seek, through reflexivity, to provoke speculation as to what another (participant, viewer and artist) might be looking for.
The practice will explore these issues through revealing the image-making process; A process evolved through structures of play, and framed through relationships of mirroring, exchange and mutual guidance.
This research would be primarily based in the Film department in the School of Drama, Film and Visual Arts at the University of Kent, although I would also be in contact with researchers in other departments within the School, and beyond it (eg: the Anthropology department). The practice would be managed from the Film department but the scenarios would be situated elsewhere: partly within Kent and as both Echo and The Pickers require, partly 'elsewhere'. Until the process begins it remains undecided as to exactly where these other locations will be.
I would undertake the research through the making of two video installations:
will explore the dialogue and imagination catalysed by the orientation of two 'cameras' and the views they record when organised by two groups of people apart from each other. The process will investigate the disparity and dynamic between the actual experience of a place, and its remote experience through images.
Large numbers of young Eastern Europeans travel to the UK to work in large farms in Kent, lured by the promise of a combination of work and leisure they provide. I will work on a project with a small group of these migrant workers to begin the development of a reciprocal 'promotional video,' set in the future, offering British youth the imagined opportunities to be found through migrating to the place where these workers had left.
I will develop these artworks through using methodologies of critical analysis and textual analysis.
I will also undertake the research through exploring the possible structures for exhibiting and disseminating the final works. This decision of a final form can only be developed through engaging with the events that occur.