Theoretical critique of the work of art : co-producers in research

Mafe, Daniel (2009) Theoretical critique of the work of art : co-producers in research. In Woodrow, Ross (Ed.) ACUADS 2009 Conference Interventions in the Public Domain, ACUADS, Queensland College of Art, Griffith University.

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The ways in which the "traditional" tension between words and artwork can be perceived has huge implications for understanding the relationship between critical or theoretical interpretation, art and practice, and research. Within the practice-led PhD this can generate a strange sense of disjuncture for the artist-researcher particularly when engaged in writing the exegesis. This paper aims to explore this tension through an introductory investigation of the work of the philosopher Andrew Benjamin. For Benjamin criticism completes the work of art. Criticism is, with the artwork, at the centre of our experience and theoretical understanding of art – in this way the work of art and criticism are co-productive. The reality of this co-productivity can be seen in three related articles on the work of American painter Marcia Hafif. In each of these articles there are critical negotiations of just how the work of art operates as art and theoretically, within the field of art.

This focus has important ramifications for the writing and reading of the exegesis within the practice-led research higher degree. By including art as a significant part of the research reporting process the artist-researcher is also staking a claim as to the critical value of their work. Rather than resisting the tension between word and artwork the practice-led artist-researcher need to embrace the co-productive nature of critical word and creative work to more completely articulate their practice and its significance as research. The ideal venue and opportunity for this is the exegesis.

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ID Code: 31682
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: An open access copy of this article can be accessed from the conference website. See Official URL above.
Additional URLs:
Keywords: art, interpretation, practice-led research, Andrew Benjamin, painting
ISBN: 978-1-921291-90-6
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > ART THEORY AND CRITICISM (190100)
Divisions: Past > Disciplines > Art & Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2009 [please consult the author].
Deposited On: 12 Apr 2010 00:02
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 14:11

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