Embodied Disturbance
Presented by the Artistic Research Cluster (ARC)
Wednesday 29 March 2017 3.00pm to 6.00pm
Rolle Building room 018, University of Plymouth
The workshop seeks to question traditional notions of what is often considered within the medical field as a mental disturbance or disorder, challenging what are often categorised as perceptual abnormalities.
Dark matter: being in-between on location
This paper critically reflects on the perceptual disturbances experienced during a practice research project which engaged with a rural site over a twelve-month period, focused on an unnamed hollow way in a remote area of mid-Devon. The resulting film, On Location, is a form of landscape cinema that observes a year’s seasonal cycle, capturing meteorological phenomena, the shifting light and shade, and the ebb and flow of natural growth using a range of experimental filming techniques, and accompanied by field recordings made at the site that capture the sonic architecture of the space.

Whilst at the location, being ‘in place’ with my visual and audio recording ‘instruments’, I feel tethered, as if by means of an umbilical connection between ‘bodies’ – my own corporeal body and that of the Earth. I sense the uncanny feminine, the dark matter that we know is present in the universe, but which is invisible, manifesting itself in the agency of the unknown and unknowable spaces between, and the material specificities and repetitive rhythms of light and shadow that form the illusion of moving image. On Location embodies the pre-conscious interweaving of these perceptual disturbances. The film seems to collapse the divide between nature and culture, object and subject, human and non-human. It suggests a mode of understanding of the environment as a symbiotic conversation that is effected through a creative practice that emerges from a somatic substrate of reason, feeling and action to become a unifying and transformational experience between artist, audience, materials and place.

Keywords: film, landscape cinema, materiality, new materialism
Still image from the 16mm film On Location (2017)

The Embodied Disturbance workshop is hosted by Dr Thomas Baugh (University of Plymouth) and chaired by Associate Professor (Reader) Dr Deborah Robinson (University of Plymouth), with presentations from:
Dr Thomas Baugh, Lecturer in Fine Art, University of Plymouth
Dr Kayla Parker, Lecturer in Media Arts, University of Plymouth
Louisa Fairclough, Associate Lecturer in Fine Art, Oxford Brookes University
Karen Brett, Senior Lecturer in Photography, Falmouth University
Tabatha Andrews, Associate Lecturer in Fine Art, University of Plymouth
Karen Abadie, PhD researcher in Fine Art, University of Plymouth
Laura Hopes, MA Contemporary Fine Art student, University of Plymouth
Patrick Matthews, Bowen Therapist and reflexologist