In the beginning or to paraphrase, when I began the course, I assumed that the nature of it was to make a piece of artwork spanning for the duration(two years), then nearing the end, you make a decision that its process has come to an end and therefore it is a resolved project. Naïve thinking? Totally!
Where my actions and decision-making (when art making) have radically altered, is that I have become more absorbed by the process aspect rather than the end product being everything. My practice after schooling and into higher education was always a very controlled affair. I pursued a tight regime in my approach, often very parochial and still is now to some degree. However, this course has taught me to loosen that tight grip and to meander as opposed to following uncompromising and rigid paths. It took a while but as a result, my practice began to flourish and my decisions were affected by a multitude of influences. For instance, researching, experimenting, going to lectures, discussions with peers and finding inspiration from exhibitions. In the Assessment Brief, this way of behavior is termed, personal and professional development.
With that being said, it was crucial that I kept a consistent record of research, experiments, comments, investigations etc. Easier said than done! It was only a few months into the course, though I soon began to realize the importance of ‘The Blog’. This platform would bind everything together. It would utilize my practice and metaphorically speaking, record my finger prints, footsteps and everyday movements. Fast forward a few terms and the blog became a milieu of ever-changing underdrawings that would consistently keep me informed. A trusty companion even!
So if the blog was the brain, the Project Proposal was the spine (or vice-versa), the Project Proposal became an instrument that needed to be tweaked every now and again in order to maintain the focus. Looking back on the original Project Proposal (1.0) , I find its trajectory quite staggering by the way it had shifted its direction resulting from influences and informed decision-making. The Research Paper became the stimulus of my practice. However, in hindsight, had I generated more discussion in it, its validity would not have been questionable.
The course has given me much more confidence. However, there are areas that need more considerations. There were times when I felt extreme anxiety to the point where just putting pencil to paper became a frightening ordeal. Articulating my practice with more self-assurance is needed. By doing so, it would erase doubts and the burning question. Is my practice sustainable?
My aim now is to become more visible. I’m not talking about cyber galleries but in physical spaces. In the past few months I’ve applied for open calls at exhibitions; something in the past I would never have done before. Now, the challenge is to keep knocking on the door. Presently I’m currently making a short video which explores disused Showa Architecture in Saitama, Japan. It’s been an emotional and inspirational journey.
Once I was useful: Musashi Fujisawa, Saitama, Japan (2017)