Video encounters through a lichen-covered stick
thesisposted on 27.07.2020 by Rebecca Birch
In order to distinguish essays and pre-prints from academic theses, we have a separate category. These are often much longer text based documents than a paper.
The doctoral dissertation project studies dialogical encounters in contemporary video art practice. It aims to understand how encounters between artists and subjects/ participants/ viewers generate and accumulate new materials, write new narratives, and create situations for new encounters. The project encompasses encounters that take place both in the process of filming, and during screening and performance events. It argues that both the instances of making and showing should be considered events of dialogical exchange where each participant brings their own lived experiences that join and generate something new, something unexpected.
The dialogism of Mikhail Bakhtin is a key touchstone within this project. The project argues that Bakhtin's articulation of the dialogic utterance within a work of fiction (Bakhtin 1981) opens up a new way of thinking about 'dialogical' art practice that is connected to the realm of the imagination. Whilst some theorists have considered Bakhtin's work in relation to the video installation (Haladyn 2014), and conversation in art works (Kester 2004), this project draws upon his thinking to reflect upon dialogical encounters through the whole process of video practice, the filming, storage, editing and the screening. Bakhtin's thinking about the interconnectedness of people, artworks and objects, through space and time, offers a structure for a new understanding of how video captures, stores, moves encounters forward, and re-activates remembered ones.
- The Arts, English and Drama