Summative Evaluation and Progression Statement:
I have thoroughly enjoyed an exciting, life-changing and broad-ranging research journey during this course. All my creative experiences and activities have been thoroughly recorded in my blog and, to date, I have published well over 200 posts. In order to give a structure to this ongoing document, I have organised all entries using the following key categories: critical analysis, reflection and experimentation. The others covered methods of visualisation, gathering of primary sources, viewing of exhibitions, reflection on tutorials and self-assessment of progress.
As a result of my world travels, I had a wealth of resources and unique observations of the dynamics of life across humanity. However, I was oblivious to a universal truth, which reveals a common link across nations, cultures and races. My initial research was concerned with the clarification of my creative intentions and learning to understand the potential and value of my learning process.
During reviewing my primary sources and research findings, I noticed reoccurring characteristics across the different data. Therefore, my focus begun to be placed on investigating and questioning the concept on waiting for change in a hope for improvement. I recorded numerous people entrapped in poverty, who were suspended in vacuum of detachment, frozen in a bizarre inactivity without any chances for progress, development and achievement.
Waiting was a form of a coping mechanism, a form of dealing with tepee truth of their world as it really was.
Experimentation with interrogating an amalgamation of painting with a running narrative followed. This possibility was further extended by looking at denial and considering the dimension of time, which was required in order to make things happen and earn the necessary monetary funds.
I tried to remove from my images all symbols of luxury and wealth, which are taken for granted and, simultaneously, remain unobtainable. Gradually, I refined my research question and focused on the space in between certainty and uncertainty. I experimented with video pieces inspired by Bruce Nauman. I started to to alternate a violent act of blasting my paintings off with a powerful jet of water and the repainting process, always uncertain of unpredictability embedded in this method and never satisfied with early of superficial success and accidental effect. I forced myself to persevere and become consistent in my approach.
I took this idea further to a more extreme and aggressive stage by introducing machine interventions. I produced a range of video pieces with impact and potential for further development.
My research findings confirmed that there is little certainty in life and the only constructive way forward is to persevere.
My work has begun to become sophisticated and evolved during a long period of exploration of media, materials and processes, always trying to discuss alternatives and extend the intellectual properties of my current debate and discussion.
My experiences, at this stage, were continuously updated by ongoing visits in search for new primary sources, references and inspirations. At this stage, I was very intrigued by a newly discovered characteristics of uncertainty in the context of waiting.
Hypnotic repetition gives people to lose themselves in an opiate-trans like entrapment in daily routines and automated activities.
This brain numbing approach allows for hope to flourish and despair to depart.
I have also looked at repetition in a variety of contexts and locations to triangulate date, increase authenticity and reliability of my research findings and observations.
I immersed myself in working with a range of characteristics across different cultures, who were subjected to surviving, while being lost and oblivious to reality.
The outcome of this experimentation started to be more exciting than the original piece. It also communicated my concept and creative intentions through the repetitive spinning of a machine without thought, further analysis and reflected the behaviour of the entrapped people through mimicking automated and unconscious actions.
I painted a piece titled Burmese Captain, who was in charge of a ferry and totally disengaged with his passengers. The next significant painting depicted a Pool Player, who was forced to perform to perfection with no end in sight of relieve and portrayed a Snake seller determined to keep her market stall open.
There were also other works, including Wheel of Fortune trolley and Burmese Monks collecting donations. Finally, a large-scale painting depicting a foot masseur. Perhaps this recent attempt to extend my discussion by observing the mundane ritual of repetition in a Thai massage parlour made the most significant contribution to my thinking and visualisation.
Subsequently, I developed a meaningful plan for a range of options for my final exhibition. The essence of my ideas was to reveal the nature of this universal condition using hypnotic and repetitive tactics.
However, who could have anticipated the current situation. The reassurance of repetition is denied and the old dreams, ambitions and desires are totally contradicted. Previously, the status quo was a daily torture and nightmare, but has subsequently turned into their hope and aspiration. Their poverty has become more intense and not starving to death has become the focus of the day. The former definition and understanding of entrapment in hypnotic repetition has been reversed and replaced by survival at its most basic level.
The initial observations of my project were to investigate uncertainty. My research has ultimately closed the full circle and is exposing how life has suddenly become ephemeral and fragile to the extreme. Nothing can be taken for granted and the pandemic has reinforced how unpredictable life is.
Additionally, the element of questioning in my research statement has been given a new significance. We are all trapped in the dark hold, sailing through the rough seas of the crisis with only hope as a comfort. Similarly, the artifact by Balka, which confronted us with a dark space not knowing the environment and not being able to see our way through. There is no light at the end of the tunnel. Does optimism become despair.
My ambition is to explore the unknown human reactions to this crisis. I am excited for my work to be shared across to allow for a broader understanding of the world and resourcefulness to keep their spirits high and without self-pity.
Their paradox is, perhaps, most revealing that the people with the least have the most.
My project is on course to continue to develop and expand beyond the scope and time boundaries of this course. I have already planned for a trip to Madagascar and Ethiopia to gather more experiences to respond to and enhance my current understanding and interpretation of the leading research question. I will attempt to develop a further perspective on related issues and observations. My approach and explorations will remain open-ended and without presumption of excitement and uncertainty of tomorrow.
The world has suddenly become a much more complicated place. I am privileged to witness history in the making and would like to respond to the new dramatic developments covering all contexts of life, which is being confronted with so much death, pain and sadness.
My ultimate goal is to prepare a larger number of paintings to reveal the consequence of the evolving emotional narrative in preparation for a one man exhibition.