When working on Part 5 different text alignment, font types and/or typography and ways of displaying a written document came to mind. I was thinking to make a visualization of my PP, which can become a work in progress to develop further after this course ends. I felt a need to move away from the long document that also presents a body of work, in between the written paragraphs. I learned in my making that I enjoy research (I am by nature energetic, inquisitive and a bit of an activist) I can easily cross disciplinary boundaries to learn/read from other disciplines, be it science, music or literature. The world of mycorrhizal networks empowered me to explore more and not be fixed on one idea of understanding or sensemaking in my making or creative practice. I have learned that in my making I seek connections, which can be realistic or abstract. This was further encouraged during a session with tutor B Eccleshal on Research. (2h workshop on What is Artist Research) My biggest constraint was how to create such a work, as it seems one needs some design skills to use more than a Word-based program. I looked at the following works and artists for ideas and to start planning my own work:

VISUAL RESEARCH IDEAS I CONSIDER

  1. Artist type book – foldout style was considered

2. Brainchart and or Whiteboard style – but I also want to consider the aesthetic and not have such a graphic display of words and images. I worked on a whiteboard as well as a Jamboard on Google.

3. The Talmud layout – like this. (suggested by tutor B Eccleshall) But how to do this seems to be a problem – lacking skills

I talked to a fellow student who studies Graphic Design about layout and the type of program I would need to create a similar layout as in the Talmud above. I considered making a design with Monotype and collage printed work onto it. He will be willing to create a pdf of the design, using a specialised program and following my layout ideas.

4. Map ideas Alexander von Humboldt’s drawings of maps and visual scientific illustrations

Humboldt’s major scientific contribution was realizing the interconnectedness of climate, geography, nature, and human societies..What’s often omitted, however, in discussions of Humboldt’s scientific legacy is the role that his pioneering maps and scientific illustrations played in shaping his thinking. By creating visualizations of data that had previously been bound up in tables, Humboldt revealed connections that had eluded others, says historian Susan Schulten of the University of Denver. “He’s really a visual thinker,” Schulten says. I learned that Humboldt was a key inspiration for Charles Darwin: “Nothing ever stimulated my zeal so much, as reading Humboldt’s [travelogue] Personal Narrative,” Darwin wrote. Darwin’s vision of nature has come to be seen as one shaped by fierce competition in the struggle for survival. Humboldt’s conception of nature, in contrast, invoked balance and harmony: an integrated whole arising from the interplay of countless elements in the living and non-living worlds.

EXPLORATION AND RESEARCH TO CREATE A TEXT-BASED WORK

Why use the Talmud?

I was mostly intrigued by the fact that this piece of literature (sacred writings on the Torah or old testament Bible) is representative of more than a thousand years of Jewish thought. I understand that the foundations were laid whilst the Jews returned as exiles from Babylonia, in the middle of the fourth century BCE. It is seen as a supplement to the Bible and more of an intellectual commentary. As a work of literature, it is a classic about culture and history. My personal interest is around what is seen as permitted and what is seen as ‘secret’ and how this influenced the Hebrew alphabet and writings, which should also be seen as ‘figurative’ and poetic elaborations. I learned that the style of writing is called ‘hermeneutics – being a commentary with a series of references to the Torah.

In a graphic way, the pages look interconnected, referring to commentaries and references – this is why visually it caught my interest and I can see it connected with my PP in the way the learning became a web of references and images. Visually I think there is a similar idea of working with multiple texts simultaneously which I could use to see how things (my body of work) co-exist and interact. (which again is very similar to the Fungal Kingdom). It also reminds me of my own studio – becoming messier – things all over the place, but they are all part of this bigger thing – my Parallel Project.

A good read to consider:(https://acg.media.mit.edu/projects/thesis/DSThesis.pdf)

In the Tableau Physique (in the French version of his original publication), he organizes his observations in an intuitively visual way, showing Chimborazo in cross-section, with text indicating which species lived at different elevations on the mountain.  It becomes clear that his thinking is shown in this work; “He’s trying to think about how all these elements of the landscape fit together and impinge on one another,” Scientists before him had used maps and illustrations primarily to describe and summarize their findings, Humboldt used his visualizations to look for explanations – like artists have to look for questions/problems

https://www.sciencefocus.com/planet-earth/alexander-von-humboldt-the-first-environmentalist/

It becomes clear that I either need a design-based program to create my idea of using the Talmud outlay or create my own generic outlay by hand. Design programs as expensive and it also seems that I will have to learn how to work such a tool, which could be time-consuming and not easy to use before I could even think of printing a pdf file.

I can consider collaborating with an OCA student, but there could be time constraints with regard to being ready by the Assessment date. The best plan I could come up with was to acquire a typewriter and I started looking for a secondhand machine online. On Monday 8 August 2022, I found one close to our village and now I can start working.

VISUALIZING IDEAS

Printing options explored

Monoprint with an added layer of writing
Collage onto monoprint

I also looked at Collagraph printing, as I have some experience with Intaglio printing. I worked on an A4 board and would like to work on a bigger plate. During this research, I came upon a printer that uses collage onto a perspex plate and I will continue to explore this method for my making.

CONSIDERING THE USE OF VIDEO WORK AS A PRESENTATION

I came upon an application that seems quite intuitive and could help me make video presentations of my work for the upcoming assessment.

Thinking about questions that arose from this project:

I am thinking more about provoking questions taking this project further in my studies, and not being an ‘opinion-based’ project on how I think.

It is important for my work to consider questions like What sort of world do you the viewer want to live in?

Reflecting on the work I have done, as well as the whole experience of having some time after to course to come back to my work before I send it for Assessment, made me consider the idea of ‘composting’ as I read in an article in the June Fine Arts Newsletter of OCA.

I could literally allow for the dust to settle on all my research and where I want to go from here. I could develop more work, re-work others and plan new work. I value my blog even more now when I look back at completing this course.

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