The Open Seam On Becoming a Knot with a Storm-sculpted Roof, on Speaking-with from Within

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisMonograph

Abstract

The central notion under exploration in this thesis in the field of artistic research is the cooperation of materials. The thesis is divided into three parts: excavation, exposure and weathering. The three processes enable an engagement with the notion of material cooperation, focusing on site, time and agency. Considering the current time of crises, the study highlights the urgency of re-envisioning the cooperative space between "one" and "other". In this thesis, it is the notion of "a waiting towards and giving room", as voiced by dialogical philosopher Martin Buber, the artmaking of Finnish sculptress Eila Hiltunen, the artist-researcher's own artistic practice, the craft and anecdotes of the artist-researcher's grandfather, as well as the post-anthropocentric concepts of Rosi Braidotti, that invigorate a practice of re-envisioning the in-between. As a site where a shared process of weathering takes place – the artistic component of the doctoral thesis, a sculpture in the form of a storm-sculpted roof based on an actual meteorological event – provides the means for practising and examining the exchange of agency between the artist-researcher herself, an atmospheric condition and copper as the working material. The practice-based methods applied in this thesis – knotting, twining, rehearsing and speaking-with – enable vital bonds between multi-sidedness and multiple temporalities, paving the way for dialogue between various generations, material visions and agents. The thesis contributes to the rethinking of existing material visions. This requires, it claims, a re-contextualisation of approaches to material that took place in the past. It is these notions from the past, unseen, that allow, once excavated, a revival of contemporary notions to regenerate for future applications. In conclusion, the thesis proposes three moments towards a vital material cooperation. 1) Through the methods of knotting and twining, a new encounter takes place that counterbalances the density and inertia of material composition. This first moment requires thinking in a long line and through circular movements. 2) Through rehearsing this new encounter in an ongoing manner, a new memory forms which is called a touchstone in this thesis. This touchstone holds the space temporarily open and guides future encounters. 3) Through speaking-with the cooperating materials in the temporary space, the materials unfold to jointly and actively weather. In this last moment, the space of "one" and "other" becomes a space of the in-between, a space of many. Rather than focusing on knowing and learning, this space foregrounds transformation, experimentation, care and desire.
Translated title of the contributionThe Open Seam On Becoming a Knot with a Storm-sculpted Roof, on Speaking-with from Within
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor's degree
Awarding Institution
  • Aalto University
Supervisors/Advisors
  • El Baroni, Bassam, Supervising Professor
  • Mäkikoskela, Riikka, Thesis Advisor
Publisher
Print ISBNs978-952-64-0885-9
Electronic ISBNs978-952-64-0886-6
Publication statusPublished - 2022
MoE publication typeG4 Doctoral dissertation (monograph)

Keywords

  • artistic research
  • posthumanism
  • dialogical thinking
  • material cooperation

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