Saturday, 30 December 2017
Drawing Ideas: a Philosophy Collaboration
It is an exciting time of creative change for me right now, juggling lots of new things. As regular readers will know, in the middle of my surge of interest in embroidered textiles, I am also getting ready to leave for Australia, for my UWA residency. But there is something else too, something completely different, which has come my way recently.
Remember the Ideas Bazaar event run by Sheffield University, where I exhibited my reportage work? Well, I initially thought nothing had come of it but, although it has taken a little while to get it together, I have now connected up with the university's philosophy department: a completely new area for me. But it's also going to be a completely new kind of work...
I have been having meetings with a philosopher Phillip Nash and we are really excited at the opportunity to work together. We have these brilliant discussions about ideas, which just roll and roll and tease my brain into lots of places it hasn't been before. It is all fascinating new stuff for me but, what is really inspiring, is the unexpected common ground we have. We are both really interested in how creativity works, and the creative process in the visual arts is closely mirrored in creative-thinking practises.
We have put together an exciting new project, where we will use my visual communication skills to attempt to interpret a series of abstract ideas about knowledge and the pursuit of truth.
As usual, none of it is a done-deal, because it depends on funding, but we are going to apply to the Making Ways fund for research and development support, to test the process and hopefully create a series of interesting, innovative drawings. At the same time, we are being supported by a professor at Sheffield University and together we are putting in for some funding to make a presentation for the Festival of the Mind, in October next year. The idea is to build on the initial drawings, to develop them into artwork which hopefully can help communicate some of these philosophical ideas. We want to put together an exhibition of all the work, but also run some workshops, to test how well the work communicates and to use the drawings to explore further the connections between visualisation and the understanding and retention of new ideas.
It feel weird to be getting so excited about this, when I have to leave it completely now and go to Australia. If it comes off though, I will be able to start on it the moment I get back. Ultimately, I want to use all this as the basis for an entirely new collection of textiles work, but that's even further off. One step at a time!