Thank you for joining me in my first post as a CAPI Crossing Borders Scholar with the University of Victoria. Using an assemblage of literary vignettes, poems, images, and video clippings as my medium, I intend to use this blog space to share my process as an arts-based researcher working within the context of a shanti-school in a small village in Goa, India. Fractitious, sporadic and tangled, these posts form a body which avoids the dilution of factual representation and instead sits in discomfortable spaces where language hesitates and absolutes falter. Uncertain and often unspoken, this is not a memoir of interpretation, rather a movement of sensual invention. A living, aesthetic inquiry into my practice. As I think with some of the tensions, highlights, curiosities and inspirations that emerge through this research experience, I hope that these posts may provoke you to critique, question and explore alongside with me.
So, what sort of arts-based research am I doing?
Drawing loosely on feminist and post-human notions of learning as an “untamed” and “more-than-multiple” experience (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987, p. 154), I play with the use of Artistic Memoir as a method to explore my affectual experiences (Braidotti, 2002; Springgay, 2008) as a British Columbian, school-based Child and Youth Counsellor working as a visitor in the context of a shanti-school in Goa, India. Well practiced in traditionally Western paradigms of education, my intention is to move beyond my familiar understandings of what it means to be educated in North America to heighten awareness of intuitive forms of learning that arise in an encounter between intra-acting bodies, materials, and the agentic spaces between (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987). Understanding learning experiences as relational and enigmatic events, composed of rather than in the world, I engage with an inductive, intuitive and becoming-with process, exploring the emerging themes and entanglements of my presence in this Goan classroom as they grow out of a collection of child-driven, emergent art projects (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987; Mazzei, 2010). As I take on the implications of methodology and “data analysis” in post-qualitative research, I think with Deleuze and Guattari’s (1987) constructions of maps, expressing my interpretation of these events with my own poetic and visual assemblages and navigating curiosities through Artistic Memoir. Thinking with philosophies of immanence (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987), new materiality (Braidotti, 2002) and the autobiographical nature of a/r/tography (Irwin, Beer, Springgay, Grauer, Xiong, Bickel, 2006), Artistic Memoir has unravelled as a nomadic method, giving my experiences and understandings of the projects a temporal body – a disjointed place for my data, fragments of my affectual reverberations with Goa, to momentarily settle. A fragmented and non-linear collection of poems, images, anecdotes and short stories, this composition begins from the middle and poses no end; its process is designed to stir up questions over answers. Through this method, my intention is to look into the “events of activities and encounters” with affective, arts-based education, “evoking transformation and change” in my experience with “data” and understanding of learning, being and knowing (Hultman & Taguchi, 2010, p. 535).
Stay tuned for pieces of my artistic memoir coming soon!
Braidotti, R. (2002). Metamorphoses: Towards a materialist theory of becoming. Malden, MA;Cambridge, UK;: Polity Press.
Deleuze, G., & Guattari, F. (1987). Ch.6: How do you make yourself a body without organs?. In A thousand plateaus: Capitalism and schizophrenia. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Hultman, K., & Taguchi, H. (2010). Challenging anthropocentric analysis of visual data: A relational materialist methodological approach to educational research. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 23(5), 525-542.
Irwin, R. L., Beer, R., Springgay, S., Grauer, K., Xiong, G., & Bickel, B. (2006). The rhizomatic relations of A/r/tography. Studies in Art Education, 48(1), 70-88.
Mazzei, L. (2010). Thinking data with Deleuze. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 23(5), 511-523. Retrieved March 19, 2015, from file:///C:/Users/Alex/Downloads/Mazzei_Thinking data with Deleuze -2 (1).pdf
Springgay, S. (2008). Body knowledge and curriculum: Pedagogies of touch in youth and visual culture. New York: Peter Lang.