Shift Happens: The Process

Work in Progress Show: Night School


The opportunity to exhibit in the work in progress show allowed me to set time parameters for the work to be finished. I also took the opportunity to take more of a playful approach to displaying and curating the show

Upon reflection of this work, I closely examined my material choices along with how they were displayed. The overall structure was made from coloured acrylics sandwiched between 3mm MDF. This was then fixed together with cable ties. I had originally used this form of fixing so that it would remove the necessity for a adhesive that would leave a residue and therefore wouldn’t hinder the sleek finish of the acrylic. However by doing so, the form became difficult to hold because of the sharp edges.

Although I had made specific choices in my attempt to make the work haptic, the result was the opposite. It appears that acrylic cannot be used for such an approach, its history within art means that it holds an authority to be seen and not touched. Throughout my practice I plan to explore how acrylic can be used for a haptic approach while also simultaneously experimenting with other finishes to encourage a haptic approach.

Another issue that had an impact on both the holding and the folding of the form was the hinges that I designed. The mechanism was intended to ease the folding of the thicker form. However, due to time constraints I had used acetate. This allowed a degree of flexibility when folding but overall it gave the form a feeling of instability that was translated through both sight and touch.

As mentioned above I had made choices to encourage a haptic experience, this included the scale. With each triangle being the size of the average adult hand, I had intended each triangle to be felt and understood through this holding. This intention was inspired by the Heidegger’s philosophy of ‘Dasein’ and his definition of the word understanding. His definition ‘It involves an act of understanding (verstehen).’ Understanding is not a theoretical knowing that we possess, but involves a process for which we come to know. It is something we do. Understanding is being in the world.'(B, Bolt. 2011; 183-4). As a way of guiding people into the act of understanding I provided a subtle form of instruction that demonstrated how the coding system worked and how each of the three shapes was supposed to look. This was presented on a roll of paper along a low stage with the sculpture alongside. I believe this approach gave an informal and relaxed setting for the sculpture to be viewed as something that could be interacted with, rather than an art object.

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