This panel considers drawing and other inscriptive practices and their relation to creativity. Drawing, broadly, is considered as a form of knowledge production, leading to questions about the nature of the knowledge produced, how it differs from other forms, and the uses of that knowledge.
Inscribing marks into surfaces remains a relevant form of creative practice in this digital age. Drawings and other inscriptive practices are, however, often dismissed in a variety of ways: relegated to the status of images or objects of study rather than representing an understanding of the world in their own right. The status of drawing and other inscriptive practices in producing alternative forms of understanding remains contested, even in supposedly friendly disciplines such as architecture.
This renewed focus on creative practices within anthropology offers an alternative to art-historical modes of inquiry which, whilst important and useful, do not tell us everything about a drawing, notation, diagram or map, often neglecting the very making of the thing.
This panel is proposed in order to investigate a range of aspects of drawing. More broadly considered as inscriptive practices including diagrams, notations, and other forms of mark-making, drawing remains a crucial component of a number of creative practices from architecture through to fine art. The panels invite accounts from both practitioners and anthropologists, particularly when the practitioners are anthropologists.
It is envisaged that the panel will consist of three sessions:
(1) Drawings Of;
(2) Drawings By; and
(3) Drawings With.
Part 1 will focus on drawings made by the contributors, discussing what they are drawings of: be that their own bodily capacity, studies of material culture, movements or costumes; Part 2 discusses methods and approaches towards the drawings made by others, and how to better understand them. Finally, Part 3 involves the practice of making drawings: live demonstrations and practical workshops.
This panel is closed to new paper proposals.
The paper discusses the importance that the drawings of sections play in the way that various design-oriented disciplines understand and produce space, especially architecture in the digital era.
Every conventional architectural drawing is a section. Despite the fact that this simple truth is common knowledge, very little research has been accomplished towards understanding the nature of 'cutting' that designers habitually do during their design processes .
Nevertheless, our era has been described as an age of 'divided representation' (Vesely 2004), where the instrumental, rationalistic and commodifiable aspects of life have overthrown the ethical, creative and communicative ones that used to give meaning to human life. This schism has led to the fact that representations have lost their power to re-present things meaningfully and have become mere ghosts of reality -often by rejecting it overall.
This paper puts forth the hypothesis that understanding space through sections is the outcome of the way that western culture has been defining knowledge and the way that it has been approaching education. Moreover, it suggests that the drawing of cross-section is a special tool, that was invented during the late Middle Ages or early Renaissance in western Europe, influenced by humanistic education and the flourish of human anatomy in the universities of the time. The hypothesis focuses then on contemporary architectural education to argue that new technologies and Computer Aided Design challenge the dominancy of this paradigm.
The paper will provide evidence of current design studio educational practices from the design studio in architecture in order to show the way that 'cutting' is applied through new media and Computer Aided Design.
Sixty frames per second: Using the 'distancing' quality of hand drawing to interrogate the logic of virtual worlds.
This paper explores drawing as a tool for examining the construction of virtual game worlds. By translating dynamic game spaces into static works, I argue the draughtsman becomes similar to Flusser's 'black box,' distancing oneself from a virtual space while simultaneously transcribing it manually.
The role of drawing in transcribing and codifying the world around us possesses a long history, yet our conception of the world increasingly intermingles with all the various digital infrastructures and virtual spaces we inhabit daily. This paper will demonstrate my research into the use of hand drawing as a method for understanding and examining the composition of virtual video game worlds, to elucidate the logics that structure them. Despite the size and popularity of video games as a medium, the vast majority of cartographic and transcriptive drawing practice tends to reside in fan-made works rather than academic studies. As I will argue, this means that studying game spaces through drawing encompasses both the morphology of the game world, and a form of ethnographic recording of the marks made in digital worlds by players. I will draw from games theorist John Sharp's studies into games-based arts practice to argue that hand drawing constitutes a 'distancing' process that allows us to shed new light on the composition of virtual spaces by reframing them through new aesthetic regimes and working practices. I will also explore Vilém Flusser's notion of the 'black box' to compare my practice as a draughtsman in the production of drawings to the continuous rendering of frames by a virtual camera. I will conclude that my transcriptive drawings of virtual game spaces show traditional methods and protocols of architectural representation can create new insights into the spaces and communities that underpin the digital worlds that millions regularly dive into.
The Life of a River Map
Rivers are represented on maps not as encoded information but as absence - an interruption in the flow of information. The River Map, intent on giving the river course and its boundaries more presence, required a new set of drawing conventions and offered an alternative understanding of the river.
Maps are the most commonly understood and actively used form of public drawing. The making of such drawings depends on the use of widely understood conventions, which may vary between cultures, but must be commonly held within a culture to enable their use as public representations. Yet, the underlying information encoded is derived from different sources in a variety of forms. The Boundary Remark Books carried by surveyors as they plotted the first Ordnance Survey served as source for the maps, yet, though codified, did not use the same conventions but rather a more specialized set familiar only to surveyors. Same information, different code.
Common to many cultures, the rivers illustrated on public maps are visible not by virtue of codification or symbol but by absence of such - present only because they act as an interruption to the information encoded regarding land-forms or buildings. From 2002 to 2012 a re-imaging of a river map was made, in which the presence of the river and its edge formation took precedence over all other features, which required the derivation of a new set of drawing conventions to visualize, with clarity and consistency, the nature of the river and its edge through its full tidal range. The map was an armature for the documentation of various forms of information - a form of boundary book or, in modern parlance, a file folder - holding all the disparate pieces together in a form of visual simultaneity.
blubilds, a formless diagram for alteration
This paper introduces blubilds as a drawing system of alteration. Drawing from the restraints of static plans, diagrams and blueprints, blubilds work with contradictory forces of organised linear drawings and action drawings in an active process between body, apparatus and lively lines.
blubilds are an active drawing method that processes the conditions of diagrams as notation and knowledge made like diagrammatic rooms. Inserted into Edgelands urban and rural waste signatures, these blubild rooms dump the body to scatter and fragment. This paper aims to show how the blubild as a set of forces disperses both diagram and body are dispersed into a stain to alter the sites of edgelands.
Drawing on the disciplines of drawing, dance and installation to create lively lines, the formless diagram is an energy that plays on the relationship between sensation and frame, a tension that attacks the frame as a point of resistance in order to almost joyfully beat, fall and resist as a mapping. In repetition the blubilds are like maps and zones that makes the subject an integrated site through a series of quasi relations between body and site, body and apparatus, body and line. Like a game along the axis, in relation, the subject is spread across and altered by action and its placement in a site to become an intense block. blubilds attack form and use the formless wastelands edgelands ground as a site of production. Edgelands usually dominated by masculine activity, are altered into playful, active and feminine temporary sites of art/architecture. Through dynamic lines taken from a feminine and divergent point of view a blubild offers a mode of alteration on how we might experience, occupy and represent, in other words draw the sites od edgelands with feminine action drawing.
Drawing by Models; beyond the physical
The paper will analyse the authors final year project outcomes; a series of watercolour paper models which were produced as a result of large scale drawings that questioned the boundaries of what architecture and its representation are and can be.
The paper will look at drawing as a way of both objective mark making in the form of traditional architectural drawings; sections and plans and how they become part of the architectural process and design production. This will be done by analysing a small collection of architectural representations of the author's final year student project titled: Ocean Research Centre. The watercolour laser cut layered section models emerge from a background of an orthographic section drawing and instead of becoming physical and real, the straight lines embark into the imaginative realms. The layers are constructed of further section line drawings; the intention was to create a poetic paradigm of material cultures reinterpreted as per the new era for the site. The manipulation of light, shadow and materiality to achieve atmosphere, evoke emotional response based on concepts of material culture, historical and cultural contexts are not as prevalent in these first experimental pieces. However, the author's exploration to take the orthographic drawings as a point of departure into imagination, process and production of architectural space is an ongoing exploration through her PhD. This paper, is the beginning of a critical reflection of encapsulating narratives of material culture that will be applied to the representation of heritage architecture in South Asia as part of a doctoral research project to reveal the social, cultural, financial and architectural values of heritage architecture that is currently under threat of being demolished as a result of a lack of conservation and redevelopment knowledge of urban heritage environments.
The continuing importance of collecting research through direct observational drawing on location in museums.
This Paper and my participation in the 3 sessions will interrogate the continued importance for animation students of direct first hand observation when undertaking drawing research in museums.
This paper will examine examples of drawings made on location in museums by students and lecturers on the BA Animation Production course at the Arts University Bournemouth. I will present the use of sketchbooks and other forms of drawing, such as digital drawing, that demonstrate how we observe and record the expected and unexpected within the museums' curated collections.
The paper will show how the students then create their own collection of drawings, which is then in turn used to directly inform and influence the decisions made in developing animation concept backgrounds for a specific unit within the second year of the BA curriculum.
The activity of being at the museum and not searching a website can in the taught environment bring layers of new information that the student will not expect or anticipate; this adds a level of originality to their research and the final outcomes. In the longer term, this trains the student and artist to better use all methods of research, whether primary or secondary.
The student and artist approach to this form of sketchbook enquiry also provokes interrogation of the use of ethnographic and auto-ethnographic methods of research (see Kuschnir, 2016).
In conclusion I will establish by example the continued need for direct research practice for both the student and the professional animator.
Kuschnir, Karina (2016) 'Ethnographic drawing: Eleven benefits of using a sketchbook for fieldwork', Visual Ethnography, vol 5, no 1, pp. 103-134.
Etching drawing: tactile engagement and temporal evidence
An insight into the transformative potentiality revealed when materials of drawing are exploited through a tactile engagement with those of etching. The multiplicity of approaches combined with the advantage of staged proofs offers rare concrete evidence of temporal changes to drawing.
This paper will present an insight into the tactile engagement enjoyed when drawing materials are exploited through the materiality of etching. The etcher who has drawing at the centre of their practice provides a fascinating case study; their enthusiasm for their materials takes their drawing fluently from paper to metal plate and close consideration of surface enables them to trace temporal progress. Ingold , writing about the textility of making, spoke of "the tactile and sensuous knowledge of line and surface that had guided practitioners through their varied and heterogeneous materials…"(2011:211) - a commentary which can be appropriately applied in this context. To illustrate this I will discuss the practice of Jason Hicklin RE whose material understanding of place and process create connections with social histories and, secondly, Ian Chamberlain ARE whose forensic investigation of surface describes a temporal appreciation of place. When drawing engages with etching all senses are awakened to the material processes; from the drag and glide of pencil on paper to the evocative smell of printing ink and the sticky resistance of wax on warm metal. The additional quality of etching is its ability to deliver concrete material evidence of the progression of a drawing by printing a state proof after each enthralling and revelatory process. Through drawing-as-etching haptic and tacit understanding facilitate an exploitation of concepts and materials, and, as such, its materiality is the appeal of this engaging form of expression.
This paper takes point of departure in a collection of drawn notes made during my fieldwork in Uganda 2014-2016 (see http://ethnographicfieldnotes.blogspot.dk/). I explore what they are drawings of and develop an argument in favor of drawings in ethnographic research and representation.
This paper takes point of departure in a collection of drawn notes made during my fieldwork in northern Uganda 2014-2016 (see http://ethnographicfieldnotes.blogspot.dk/). I explore what is captured in the drawings, which revolve around concrete situations as I experienced them during fieldwork. To use thin pens and watercolors has allowed me to capture non-verbal aspects of fieldwork - atmospheres and moods - in a non-verbal way. The drawings consist of excerpts of conversations between my interlocutors and me, material details characteristic of my field, shades and light, and small, personal comments. They are made by my hands, but they spring from actual encounters. In this sense, the drawn notes reflect a mix of what is drawn and the drawer.
To draw create a space for reflection for the drawer that is not only based on verbalization and to look at drawings spur the reader's curiosity in a different way than words do. Therefore, I argue that drawn notes are highly relevant in relation to ethnographic methodology as well as representation.
6B 6H: where drawing meets archaeology
Can an Artist in Residence working with perceptual observations, contribute to Archaeological research? Concentrating on human activity, sketchbook drawing, pleinair painting, and sound recordings, are used to reveal the everyday process of archaeology, and transient dialectical images of the past.
An artist working with archaeology is engaged with their own artist's research, often working freely to draw perceptions rather than attempt accurate documentation. Through constant perceptual observations, it is possible to present the anthropological nature of a dig, and be open to any fleeting occurrence of Benjamin's dialectical images, which bring the past directly into the present.
In 2016 I joined the dig on the Ness of Brodgar in Orkney as Artist in Residence. My aim was to see if perceptual drawing could contribute to archaeological research. My interest is in the human activity on site and the everyday process of excavation. Using sketchbook drawing, pleinair painting, and sound recordings, I collected sufficient material to take back to my studio and begin constructing a film, hoping to evoke a sense of being on the site.
At the end of my four week stay, the Director asked me to return in 2017 and continue my residency for the foreseeable future. Clearly something is working in my relationship with the archaeology, although I am unable yet to articulate why. The opportunity to make this a long term project over the next few years, makes it possible to spend time investigating my role on site and the elusive nature of connections with the Neolithic past.
This paper will present work to date including material collected and film edits, and discuss the ongoing process of my research in two areas: the relationship between artist and archaeologist, and the alterity of the dialectical image.
The architecture of drawing: tools of interpretation
The study examines the role of bespoke drawing tools in the interpretation and realisation of architectural ideas in order to challenge the bypassing of intuitive design processes inherent within digital tools.
Traditionally the role of the architect was one of designer where architecture was considered an intellectual pursuit that questioned the context of building, rather than building itself . As such traditional methods of training focused on 'the hand', a recognised means of engaging in design thinking and one that valued craft as a means of exploring and conveying design ideas. The prevailing approach to architectural education however is now sited in Computer Aided Design, promoting it from presentation tool to an indispensable interface for designers.
As an educator in the design studio however it has become clear that students who utilise digital tools at the expense of the hand are frequently unable to drive their own enquiry. It is considered that the use of 'new' digital tools at the expense of 'old' freeform ways of working has undermined the key values inherent within traditional means of doing and learning, and of understanding the tool. In response a series of projects were designed to bridge this gap by creating alternative tools to facilitate design investigations via drawing.
Students were tasked with designing new drawing instruments to analyse a key idea, and via its design and making engage with the architecture of the idea itself. The construction of the bespoke drawing tools also forced an active critique between the means of input and output and the inherent avenues for architectural design beyond preconceived routes. Resultant projects demonstrated unpredictable and curious interpretations, and opportunities beyond the formal digital representations of ideas so prevalent today.
Touching and Tracing: The Peculiar Sensibility of Drawing in the Textiles Archive
The paper discusses drawing as a tool to research and reflect upon the lives of material artefacts using case studies of an artist working with historic dress collections. It demonstrates how the visual scrutiny of drawing can elicit material evidence and offer nuanced interpretation.
The paper discusses drawing as a tool to research, communicate and reflect upon the material evidence in historical artefacts. It asks: If drawing is an "archaeology of acts of touching" (Godfrey 1992) that embodies the maker's subjective experience (Rosand 1992; Crowther 2017) and mirrors other forms of human touch, what potential might this offer object-based research in archival collections?
This question is explored through three case studies of an artist (myself) using drawing to research historic dress collections at Kensington Palace (2009-2013), The Bowes Museum (2013-2015) and Ryerson Fashion Research Collection, Toronto (2017- present). These projects highlight how the visual scrutiny of drawing can elicit material evidence and offer nuanced, muliti-layered interpretation. The drawings presented will demonstrate how graphic choices of material, tool, substrate and mark making system can embody the material sense of artefacts and reflect the ways they are handled, examined and preserved. This emphasises drawing's capacity to record and communicate the materiality and emotional impact of seeing the garments, and the value of drawing as a tool for synthesising other sensory information alongside the visual.
The case studies enable us to revisit interpretations of drawing as "archaeology" or a means for "burrowing beneath the surface" (Berger 1992) to outline a fresh approach to how we might think about getting beneath the surface of an historical artefact, literally and metaphorically, through drawing.
Zaha Hadid's Notebooks: The role of the sketch in architecture's representation.
This paper will investigate the complex relationship between the sketch, the digitally influenced presentation image and the realised building in the context of images for the Museo Nationale delle Arti del XXI Secolo (MAXXI) in Rome.
It was Heinrich Wölfflin who proclaimed in response to Baroque innovation, "The most direct expression of an artist's intention is the sketch." From Wölfflin's influence what is valued is the capacity of the sketch to signify the locus of mastery of the architect's unmediated thought. Considered as the trace of purely cerebral affect, the sketch has been characterised therefore, as having the immediacy of a signature and treated as evidence of creative origins. The work of this paper is to question the assuredness of this claim through an investigation of Zaha Hadid's sketches. Problematic in Wölfflin's vision is the assumed mirroring of internal mental processes to an artefact without the transactional demands derived from techniques and conventions of representation central to the discipline. At a gestural and technical-conventional level, the sketch's 'facture' is fundamentally tied within a process of production that traverses many differing forms of representation, ones that can transgress traditions in the divide between imagining, picturing and realised building. This paper will investigate the complex relationship between the sketch, the digitally influenced presentation image and the realised building in the context of images for the Museo Nationale delle Arti del XXI Secolo (MAXXI) in Rome to question the nature of Wölfflin's claim of "direct expression of an artist's intention".
Hand delivered: Drawing within the 'margin of error'.
Originates a view that an independent tolerance allows a 'margin of error' as an implicit aesthetic measure, and that has an inexorable innate repercussion and complication in drawing's interventions and effects of making, and their indexical relation to the artist.
One can argue drawing inevitably involves decision-making under conditions of subjectivity and therefore cannot always produce sure-fire interpretations or outcomes. With this in mind the text speculates that in any drawing practice an independent tolerance allows a 'margin of error' as an implicit aesthetic measure, and has an innate implication in drawing's interventions and effects of making. Curiously, seeing it crossway with a mechanical and certain idea of drawing and its doing, the writing aims to link this 'margin of error' to an enduring, if divergent, still in play authoritative measure of the hand and its indexical relation to the artist.
The inquiry begins with a consideration of Katharina Hinsberg's (1999) Nulla dies sine linea (No Day without a Line), where error and a detached and automated approach to drawing appears to be emphasised, yet contradictorily, all the while motions to a subjective resistance of the hand. Going on it brings in to the discussion Warhol and the printers' tear sheet as an aesthetic measure, which prefigures here a notion of a failure of reproduction and the production of its effects. Conveying these thoughts and the technologies of our time together, Hinsberg's subjective resistance and Warhol's failure of reproduction is placed alongside Wade Guyton's skewed use of digital technologies and the operational error and technical failure that result; the blurs, runs, and smudges which perhaps demonstrate that the trace of the artist's hand — no matter how dispassionate, ironic or evacuated of meaning — stubbornly remains drawing's most compelling message.
Material presence - drawing as thought as text
The joint paper highlights contradictory notions of the ephemeral associated with materialising thought through drawing/writing. Clarke is concerned with re-description of photo or text in drawing. Rohr explores embodied and performative drawing/writing practices that imply duration and mortality.
This joint paper/ presentation attempts to scrutinise further the contradictory notion of the ephemeral associated with materialising creative thought processes through drawing/writing. Writing and drawing transcend materiality as making and interpreting text/image go beyond the realm of annotation. Even though all artworks have surplus meaning constructed through both maker/author and the viewer (co-author) material presence is frequently considered more explicit in painting, sculpture, textile needlework, woodcarving (etc), than drawing. The craft of drawing, is complex and hybrid, more akin to writing processes. To illustrate this, Niamh Clarke argues that Virginia Woolf's novel The Waves has found visual transcription in Vija Celmins's Ocean drawings - in the sense that processes of writing or drawing are a means of embodying and making physical through gesture. Re-description informs Clarke's own practice of drawing from photographic source material.
Doris Rohr takes an interest in drawings associated with duration (performance; narrative; journal), as closely aligned with the physical embodied presence of the human hand. Yet one hesitates to call the body material - as a living entity the body is mortal rather than material. Digital drawing and design further undermines a clear distinction between material and immaterial, or virtual. Robert Smithson's Heap of Language (1966) presents text as drawing in a state of composting (humus). Materiality and anti-materiality seem to feed each other in drawing in a poetic science of matter and anti matter.
Workshop. DoBeDo, Drawing to Converse. Participants will put aside verbal languages and communicate solely through drawing, to explore the universality, power and limits of collaborative drawing.
Participatory drawing workshop. Brew and Fält will continue their exploration of the potential of collaborative drawing as a universal language. As well as exploring what drawing does, they hope to develop new dynamic communicative ways of drawing through ongoing DoBeDo events.
1 hour workshop - or duration to fit available time.
A roundtable silent conversation, wearing masks.
1) Using a modification of the process developed in previous longer silent drawing workshops, participants will 'talk through drawing' for 30 minutes, on large sheets of paper using charcoal.
2) Brew and Fält will observe, and record video footage of the evolution of conversations.
3) Discussion of the way the conversation went and the sorts of things participants talked about.
4) Insights from previous DoBeDo drawing events.
The workshop explores:
How can we converse without words?
What sorts of things can drawing talk about?
Does drawing help us to listen?
Will people use lines as embodied invitations, e.g. to join a conversation?
Will people talk to themselves?
What will the drawn evidence tell us?
Angela Brew (UK) is a Director of Thinking through Drawing and the Brew Drawing School. She hosts international drawing symposia and professional development courses, and runs Brew Drawing Circles, an international collaborative drawing project.
Emma Vilina Fält (FINLAND) is an artist working in drawing, performance, installation and live art. She explores drawing as a listening process, Her live acts uses drawing as a means to make contact, to listen, and to collaboratively explore our experience of the world.
Video ( 56.41 mins) from recent workshop Drawing Togetherness:
Drawing to Remember: Aesthetic Engagement and Drawing as a Way of Weaving Oneself into the Texture of the World
My bad drawings help me to remember places much better than my good ones. Why? The answer may lay in the intersection of Aesthetics, phenomenology and notions of weaving and wayfaring, and Biesta's concept of experience of resistance as the hand struggles to draw what the embodied mind experiences.
Travelers take photographs to remember places, to recall and reminisce about those experiences after they have returned home. Tommy Kane, a New Yorker artist and creative director, recently published a book of his on-location drawings titled All My Photographs Are Made with Pens. Kane is not a lone drawer but one of many who record their lifeworlds in their sketchbooks by hand, pen and ink and prefer drawing and painting to photographing just like Kane.
Drawing is a way of taking notes but it is also an artistic act with aesthetic qualities and considerations, and it is difficult to carry out an artistic act without having artistic goals and intentions. When viewing my own on-location drawings later on, I have, however, noticed an interesting tendency: my bad drawings ignite much stronger and detailed memories than those drawings I consider good in artistic terms. Some good ones even seem void of recollection.
In my presentation I will first shortly describe the experience of drawing and the embodied memory that a drawing can restore. Drawing inspiration from Gert Biesta's notion of the experience of resistance, I will consider drawing as a way of weaving oneself into a location, of becoming a part of the world it holds. The presentation will bring together concepts from Aesthetics (aesthetic engagement) and phenomenology (being-in-the-world, lifeworld, horizon), and connect them with Tim Ingold's notions of weaving and the practice drawing as wayfaring, as biding oneself into the texture of the world.
Ethnographic representation and the relationship between text and drawings in Graphic Ethnography
Using examples from my own anthropological drawing practice, I outline the unique analytical possibilities afforded by graphic ethnography, focusing on ethnographic representation, the authority of the social analyst, and the relationship between images and text.
Graphic ethnographic is an emerging ethnographic field that relies on sketching, hand-made or digital drawings, but also the altering of photographic images to generate social analysis. In this paper I argue that graphic ethnography should not be conceived merely a medium of illustration, but rather as an analytical approach on its own right. Using diverse examples from my own engagements with anthropological drawing, I demonstrate how graphic ethnography provides us with a unique analytical lens to rethink and renegotiate ethnographic representation, the authority of the social analyst, and the hegemony of text. I show how drawing for graphic ethnography can upset or reverse the relationship between images and text, where text is becoming a medium of illustration, supporting, but not necessarily dominating, the delivery of an analytical narrative. I also provide examples of how the practice of drawing graphic characters may enhance an awareness of essentialism, reduction and stereotype, opening the way to unanticipated theoretical directions.
The (an)exact, robotic urban plan
The paper explores the 'anexact' qualities emerging from the relationship between drawing (understood as an action) and the passing of time (understood through Henri Bergson's Duration) by means of a digital-machinic robotic drawing apparatus built by the author.
This paper explores the relationships intersecting drawing and the passing of time (understood through Henri Bergson's Duration) in the context of a digital-machinic design process. It manifests Bergson's continuous becoming-other through a modality of drawing that enacts a succession of open-ended transformations, mobilising the friction between static and dynamic components to articulate a generative design mechanism. The source material for this endeavour are three animations of collectively captured, geo-localised paths of displacement of students at the University of Cagliari in Sardinia. These animations are rendered as dynamic urban plans, reconstructing Cagliari through the amalgamation of personal, subjective geographies. In order to re-enact this collective occupation of space, a robotic drawing machine is deployed to dynamically trace its animation data streams. Its drawing protocol reinstates the passing of time as a component of the collectively constructed urban landscape as it remaps the territorial occupation into the target surface of the paper. However, the machine is not completely up to the job: The drawing head endlessly chases the moving targets of the pathways as they play out -simultaneously- in the spatial sequence. Thus, the resulting plan(s) of urban simultaneity exist solely on the paper surface. By watching the machine at work we catch a glimpse of the continuous-but-heterogeneous dynamics of duration affecting the gradual unfolding of our collective displacements across Cagliari. Tapping into Derrida's re-reading of Edmund Husserl's The Origin of Geometry, these anexact, robotic urban plans convey the heterogeneous and continuous character of the processes that originate them: Never static, always becoming-other.
Using Children's Drawings in Research
This paper will draw upon my experience of using drawings made by children as a source of data . It will further elaborate on the role drawings can play in mediating power dynamics in the field and in the analysis of data, when used as a participatory method of data collection in childhood research.
Researching with children, in an attempt to capture their perspective on social institutions and processes and using their own words to explicate the social relationships they are actively engaged in, offers different set of possibilities and challenges. Over the years, the changing epistemic status of children within social research has subsequently led to the usage of a range of innovative and more participatory methods of collecting and analysing empirical data (co)produced by children. In my own fieldwork with Indian diasporic children in the UK, I have used drawings activity as an effective way of engaging them in my research. Rather than analysing their drawings solely from my own (adult) perspective or using psychoanalytic techniques to tease out latent meanings, I have let the children talk about their own drawings and explain it in their own words. The conversation around the drawings produced rich and textured data that gave deep insights into their social worlds that interviews alone could not capture. I conceptualise children's drawing as an intersubjective social practice embedded in everyday contexts which evokes diverse subjective meanings that are mediated and produced with reference to social, cultural, economic and political modalities. Drawing activity additionally serves as an effective way of dealing with the power differential between the adult researcher and the child. The paper therefore interrogates the process of producing knowledge about children's life experiences using drawings made by children as an important source of data.
This panel is closed to new paper proposals.