Long, Jessica (2018) Observations of interaction between artwork and audiences as shared experience through individual memory perspective. Masters thesis, University of Huddersfield.

Through a rigorous development of art practice, this thesis investigates how artworks can affect an audience and how this is manipulated through context, presented information and existing audience awareness. I will argue that artworks are representations of emotions which relay information to an audience which in turn is a catalyst for emotions, creates their opinions, further ideas themselves.

The thesis presents three sections; these sections are dedicated to distinct areas of the project that have overlapped, changed and escalated to further areas of study, the development of methodology from practice led to rational philosophy and artwork practice. These sections each define the areas of research found and utilized: and the method in which these theories where developed, tested and analysed through artistic practice.

The first section contains a literature review; this supports and overlaps with the core research (section three). This covers all nine areas this project has led to, experimenting with in both ideas and practice. The Literature ranges from Walter Benjamin (1935) The Work of Art in the Age of the Mechanical Reproduction, to the recent work of Laura Gonsalez (2010) Make Me yours: The Psychodymanics of seduction through work of art. The literature research has influenced the project through various areas of study from practice based research to theoretical study; Mark Ferem (2006) Bathroom Graffiti, Brain O’Doherty (1986) Inside the White Cube: the Ideology of the Gallery Space, to Francois Laurelle (2011) The Concept of Non Photography, Satre (1943) Being and Nothingness, Demian Whitling (2009) The feeling Theory of Emotion and the Object-Directed Emotions and Bruce Latour & Adam Lowe (2010) The Migration of the Aura of the Aura of how to explore the original through its Fac Similes.

The second section describes the practice led methodology and its relationship to theory. This includes the work of Barrett, E. & Bolt, B. (2010) who used the concept of a ‘neo-narrative’, written in Practice as Research: Approaches to Creative Art Enquiry, to describe the link between theory and practice; which is practiced within this project. As the expression of the experience and knowledge of the practitioner and gives voice to all experiences of the theory and personal meaning: This is the “human element that influences our understanding of aspect of the world” (2010, p. 29).

The third section, Art Practice collects together four practice case studies, which describes the creation of objects from theoretical research and the subsequent observations of responses, ideas and behavioural patterns created through each artwork and the data collection from them. The cases studies include; Hepworth Study, Latrinalia, Spatial Photography, Special Objects vs Reproduced Objects. Individually they explore the varying methods, art styles, materials, documentation and data retrieval of achieving interaction from audience members through artworks: observation & review, latrinalia, photography and origami specifically.

The inclusions of case studies were used to simplify larger theories of how artworks involve audiences within the experience. The studies create a base line of information on how this works in a real gallery, to mimicking this through latrinalia; which creates work through audience participation, without which artwork would not exist. Further expanding the understanding of audience inclusion through opinions collected of photographic methods and testing audience’s emotional responses through optional removal of artwork to keep; utilising origami as a reproduced and special object.

This project presents research reviews and data collection from the literature research, case studies and experiments achieved through quantitative and qualitative feedback and observations. The data collected here is a comment on the effects of artworks and their presentational and personal contexts that this project describes.

Jessica Long FINAL THESIS.pdf - Accepted Version
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