Illuminativa - The Resonance of the Unseen

Ventling, Friedrich Derek
Ings, Welby
Bathurst, Ralph
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Doctor of Philosophy
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Auckland University of Technology

This practice-led creative arts thesis investigates the metaphysical notion of light as an activating principle and how this is subjectively experienced. Light is phenomenologically explored as a catalytic agent that is interactive yet ephemeral, influencing perception and consciousness. Light is also the research tool used to capture, develop and articulate personal discoveries through designed environments.

Philosophically, the research is founded upon the medieval spiritual concept that illumination is a key transformational aspect of our cognitive journey (Bonaventure, 1996; Hayes, 1996; McAdams, 1991; Miccoli, 2001; Schumacher, 2009). This process begins with a sensory experience from making, and leads through philosophical thought to wisdom. In metaphysical terms, light may be understood as a connective agent and a force that provides stimulus and developmental capability. Of particular interest within this context is lumen, described as a state where archetypal light activates beings and radiates through them. This threshold between metaphorical and visible light is explored from the personal perspective of the contemporary artistic researcher.

By conceiving material arrangements as sedulous yet unstable conjunctions of texture and light, I seek to creatively apprehend the vestiges of the unseen. As the observer and the observed, I am physically immersed in these experimental arrangements, actively probing and apprehending the deliquescent relationship between making, an embodiment in light and the conscious self. As resonant moments surface, these are captured as photographic documents. Selected images are then reorchestrated as a filmic narrative of sensory expression. Light then carries this projection within a designed installation, engaging viewers through an embodied experience of their own. The aim of this research is to invite a discourse on the potential of light, its generative manifestation and its tangible influence on our creative consciousness within contemporary artistic practice.

Artistic research , Heuristics , Embodiment , Metaphysical light , Practice-led , Creative consciousness
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