The thing is... : a self-reflective, artistic exploration through object assemblage




Bradley, Delena Ann

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Designers in theatre practice the art of creating, curating, and assembling items on stage in collaboration on a performance to drive a narrative. We frequently think of inanimate items as evidence of human action or props in a drama driven by human actors. In this MFA thesis, I will challenge this assumption by investigating how classism has played a role in undermining the intellectual and academic study of meaning in physical objects and craft. Then I will use theories of materialism, posthumanism, sociology, and assemblage from several disciplines to develop a framework to explore and understand how I design, curate, and collage various items to tell a story. This is a study of theory through reflection on my past work and reflection in various exercises. I will describe how I learned to devise, shape, and articulate my own approach to design theory by identifying the three lenses through which I look while making work; Positionality, Object Narrative, and Assemblage.


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