Sunday, October 01, 2006

In Search of Marks since 2004
-Half-day Symposium at the School of Art, Otago Polytechnic/Te Kura Matatini Ki Otago. Thursday 21st February 2008.

My work “we-us-our,” presented here is from a group participation in a show titled Maps, Metaphors and Mythologies, at Tamarind Art, NY, curated by Dr. Deepanjana Klien Danda.
This is a part of my research practice about the various aspects of “marks” and their making that we could identify, associate, relate, interpret, understand and analyse. “we-us-our,” explores the human conditions currently affecting the human existence not for the purpose of identifying the ‘WHO’, but to resolve the insecurities and dilemmas existing in the contemporary societies of the world, with a common understanding and attitude that reflects our desire to live but with a favourable environment and atmosphere.

The show operated primarily on Michael Foucault’s lecture, Öf other spaces, in which he states that, “We are in the epoch of simultaneity; we are in the epoch of juxtaposition, the epoch of near and far, of the side-by-side, of the dispersed. We are at a moment. I believe, when our experience of the world is less that of a long life developing through time than that of a network that connects points and intersects with its own skein.”[1]

Human connectivity as an existing phenomenon operates in many and various means and modes. In a larger perspective, although each one of us are individuals, we are undoubtedly connected, either physically (bodies), mentally (transcendental), metaphysically (mind), virtually (perceptually) or just by the imaginative powers of fantasy and manifestation. Sometimes, we feel that we are not in any way responsible for what is happening around us. The feeling of association and to be or not-to-be a part of something and someone and the question of “being” itself, has some underlying implications in phenomenology
[2] of life. The repercussions of the actions and its effects are also in a way connected to each one of us in the most (sub) conscious states of mind. There is always a diverging aspect to the directed forces and energies in life, but these could be natural and also intended to fulfil the materialistic notions and desires of a selfish/selfless human being - Within these parameters of existence the vested human interests like violence, war, environmental mutilation, power politics and many other inhuman activities, have witnessed the most insane actions resulting into unpredictable catastrophes pushing the possibilities of making our human species as endangered and extinct.

The idea of imperfection as an accepted human quality has effected/ inflected/ damaged the idea/attempts of being perfect. Perfection here is perceived as something unattainable, while on the other hand it did not stop/ hinder the attempts of the ‘few’ enlightened souls. In fact most of it is also misunderstood as the ultimate super natural reality or myth, and is reduced to the level of a human construct where life could not exist without some intended sacrifices. My attempt is to demystify this contradiction in our society and emphasize the need for a greater awareness of the consequences / contributions of our actions. Hence, the use of popular culture and the elements representing them has become my area of interest. The situation of experiencing various cultures with my eastern perspective has enabled me to think about existing human conditions and the possibilities for spiritual growth.

[1] Of other Spaces, Michael Foucault, 1967, Heterotopias Lectuere, published by the French journal Architecture/Mouvement/Continuite in 1984.
[2] Edmund Husserl’s and Martin Heidegger’s contradicting theories of phenomenology.
Realistic Phenomenology- search for the universal essence of various sorts of matters, including human actions, motives, and selves. Adolf Reinach adds philosophy of law, Max Scheler added ethics, value theory, religion, and philosophical anthropology; edith stein added philosophy of the human sciences. Alexander Pfander, Herbert Spiegelberg and Karl Schuhmann and Barry Smith –successive leaders of this tendency.
Constitutive Phenomenology- 1913 by Husserl, philosophy of the natural sciences. Oskar Becker, Aron Gurwitsch and Elisabeth Stroker- transidental phenomenological epoche and reduction. This procedure involves suspending acceptance of the pregiven status of conscious life as something that exists in the world and is performed in order to secure an ultimate intersubjective grounding for the world and the positive sciences of it. Use of this method places constitutive phenomenology in the modern tradition that goes back at least to Kant, and also characterizes the rest of Husserl's work.
Existential phenomenology- Martin Heidegger's Sein und Zeit of 1927, use an analysis of human being as a means to a fundamental ontology that went beyond the regional ontologies described by Husserl.
Concerned topics of this ideology are - action, conflict, desire, finitude, oppression, and death. Arendt contributed to political theory and the problematics of ethnicity, Beauvoir raised the issue of gender and old age, Merleau-Ponty creatively continued the appropriation of Gestalt psychology in his descriptions of perception and the lived body, and Sartre focused on freedom and literature. Recent philosophers are - John Compton, Michel Henry, Maurice Natanson, and Bernhard Waldenfels.
Hermeneutical phenomenology - Heidegger's Sein und Zeit, in which human existence is interpretative. Hans-Georg Gadamer's Platons dialektische Ethik (1931), reemerging after Germany's National-Socialist period with his Wahrheit und Methode (1960). Other leaders include Paul Ricoeur, Patrick Heelan, Don Ihde, Graeme Nicholson, Joseph J. Kockelmans, Calvin O. Schrag, Gianni Vattimo, and Carlo Sini.

Material: Plaster, Surgical gloves, Carton/corrugated boxes, Thread/rope, Plastic sheet, Acrylic colours, Marking pens , (white board markers), Poems, Paintings.


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