Loughborough University
Thesis-2011-Wild.pdf (15.62 MB)

Becoming invisible: art and day-to-day life

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posted on 2011-11-15, 13:54 authored by Laura Wild
The thesis identifies a methodology for practice-led Fine Art research that emphasises day-to-day processes, which tend to be overlooked, and a practice, which becomes invisible to the mainstream art world. Attending to day-to-day habitual process is found to open up possibilities for embodied becoming through thinking and re-membering. Negotiating boundaries in face-to-face encounter is discovered to encourage inter-subjective becoming and is explored in terms of ethical interaction. The reflexive methodology considers questions arising from the possibility of exchange instead of gift, art as process rather than commodity, and an attitude of dissensus relating to artists as nonconformists. Tension and interaction in community leads to a pacific process of immanent invisibility, which functions as quiet activism and gentle politics provided by readymade situations. Mierle Laderman Ukeles s Touch Sanitation (1984), Allan Kaprow s Trading Dirt (1983) and selected works of Heath Bunting (2002-2010) are amongst the artworks cited in a discussion of artists who engage with materials or processes that are often overlooked including waste disposal, soil, and institutional structure. Emmanuel Levinas s approach to alterity (Levinas, 1988, 172) and Julia Kristeva s suggestion that connection cannot occur without severance (Kristeva, 1987, 254) have helped define an ethical practice of inter-subjective becoming. Victor Turner s notion of communitas (Turner, 1969) has affirmed a choice to avoid hierarchical structure and engage in processes that result in immanent invisibility. My contribution to practice-led, Fine Art research has involved testing a method rather than proving a hypothesis. I have developed a methodology that values art becoming invisible during the process of emphasising the overlooked in day-to-day life. Anecdotal passages throughout the text together with links in the text to my website and web log demonstrate an integration of practice with theory, which has been arrived at through a process of reflexive speculation. Two discs accompany the printed thesis that allow for digital reading.



  • The Arts, English and Drama


  • Arts


© Laura Wild

Publication date



A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.

EThOS Persistent ID



  • en