The Force of Time: Diagramming Bergson's elan vital

Graham, Joe (2016) The Force of Time: Diagramming Bergson's elan vital. In: 2016 Drawing Research Network Conference: Tracing the Bridge, 5-6 Sept 2016, Loughborough University.

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Abstract / Summary

Inspired by the call to “perform philosophy in a non-philosophical way” (Emoe 2014) my current artistic research explores the phenomenon of ‘lived time’ via the practice of serially developed drawing. Treating the act of drawing as a diagrammatic means for enabling speculative thought, I seek to cross and re-cross the bridge that stubbornly persists between subject and object – attempting to ‘draw out’ a more coherent understanding of one via the other, and vice versa. This particular series of work explores the Bergsonian notion of élan vital from a practitioner’s perspective, aided by Ihde’s (2008) postphenomenological approach. Connected to Bergson’s broader philosophy of durée, élan vital suggests that time is a driving force, intuited through the immediate experience of consciousness. In order to render visible a purely intuitive (invisible) notion about the nature of time, I employ a mechanical metronome that divides the experience of time into discrete units. The metronomic division of time, although subjectively perceived, also provides a variable rhythm one can objectively draw lines to. The purpose of working in this manner is to record the effect a changing tempo has on the form of the lines as they are drawn. In treating the resulting drawings as evidence in support of my argument, I look to interrogate Bergson’s puzzling notion of time in new and innovative ways.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: Arts > Drawing
Courses by Department: The Falmouth School of Art > Drawing
Depositing User: Joe Graham
Date Deposited: 03 Mar 2017 12:35
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2017 16:08
URI: http://repository.falmouth.ac.uk/id/eprint/2130

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