Here are my notes for today’s presentation. A recording of the event is at the end of the post.
As I’m sure is true for all of us, I’ve found this course to be a bit of an emotional roller-coaster ride. Not only from day to day, but from lecture to lecture, and even within each lecture I can go from elation to depression in the course of a few minutes.
What I think this shows is that I’m at least being challenged by the work we’re doing, which has to be a good thing, when all is said and done. I keep telling myself, when the tasks seem insurmountable, that if I wasn’t feeling this way I wouldn’t have any way of knowing when I was up against my limits and potentially making progress.
There is a distinct difference between this presentation and the first. The first was an introduction to me and my life up until the point at which I entered Goldsmiths, concentrating on personal, anecdotal evidence.
Review the first presentation
List of objects:
- DVD: Jacques Tati’s Playtime (my sense of humour, modernism, architecture in general)
- Some Monopoly houses (suburbia – my upbringing, architecture)
- my iPod (music, electronica)
- A small maquette for a sculpture (lovely objects, my interest in art)
- 2 of my own artworks – the erratum slips and the Malevich book (the work I was producing while at College)
List of objects:
- Deleuze and Guattari
This time around I’ll talk about specific things which have developed during the course and which I hope will develop during this term and beyond.
Perhaps the main theme (or problematic) of last term was my search for a hook within the course subject-matter on which I could hang my own interests and (potential) work. This has only very recently started to become clear to me.
Up until the end of last term I think I was somewhat at a loss as to how the course actually intersected with my own interests. The main problem being that I’m not sure what my interests are at this point, which obviously makes any kind of connection and subsequent progression difficult. This has always been a problem for me – even before we started this course I was viewing it as more of a move away from a negative than towards a positive, real goal.
But the presentation that I did with Ian in the last week of term clarified some things for me. Certainly what I enjoyed most in this presentation was the analysis of the display of the Beuys work at the tate, and—perhaps more pertinently—the representation of that analysis through diagrams and performance during the presentation itself.
In relation to this presentation I’ve started making links with aspects of previous work I’ve done (specifically my activities at Middlesex University doing my first degree, where I would write and “perform” those writings). So the writing, and performance of those writings; the concern with space and perceptions of space; the systems of awareness and control of space—I can see this as a method for future work which will now be placed on a far more informed basis than anything I was able to do in the past.
As a parallel exercise, over the past few years I’ve been keeping a blog on my website. This serves as a repository of thoughts and comments on what’s been happening to me. At the same time I’m seeing this more and more as another performance space for my writings, another area in which they are being presented.
Deleuze & Guattari
Another thing which is developing is my interest in Philosophy.
In what at first appeared to be a huge mistake I chose to take the Philosophy and… course. I originally came to it wanting to improve my knowledge and experience in this subject, but wasn’t prepared for the obscurity of the teaching. To begin with it was very disheartening to have to sit through lectures week after week and not be able to grasp the point of anything that was being talked about. Here was a situation where I felt completely out of my depth, but at the same time knew that I was learning something completely new that could only expand my thought processes, as painful as it felt.
At this point in time I don’t claim to have much more of a clue about what it’s all about, but I have been introduced to some authors whose work I’ve found interesting. I was particularly taken with the philosophy of Deleuze and Guattari. Right now I’m attempting to write an essay on the concept of ‘the refrain’ as a musical motif as well as a wider concept applicable to other forms of art and society. This is described in frustratingly obtuse detail in their book A Thousand Plateaus. Needless to say I’m finding it quite ‘interesting’ (and challenging). For me, it’s a new way of thinking and thinking about thinking, and I’m keen to see where it leads me.
So essentially my objects are the writing – represented by the blog; the performance – represented by this presentation; and the philosophy – represented by this book, as my objects for this presentation.
I can’t tell you what implications these objects will have for my future activities – that remains to be seen.