Today was possibly the most important day to date since my MA course got under way. The morning began with presentations on all of the option choices and the choice could not be made lightly as these projects are well known to cement your ideas as a practitioner or propel you into new territory and completely change your direction and intention. I read through the information and opted the night before for the Health and Wellbeing option hoping to focus on and raise awareness of mental health issues in young men and suicide rates, however, the direction for the unit was already set. This year it was to focus on Dementia and memory loss; still interesting, but my choice was now open.Object and Context stirred my interest as I would like to of tested people’s reactions by putting objects deemed feminine or masculine into different contexts and surroundings. Sci-Art sounded fantastic. It was described as an option that aimed to blur the boundaries of disciplines, work collaboratively and interdisciplinary with exciting exhibitions showcasing exciting and innovative work. They revealed an image of a huge poster of a poem that was made and hung on the side of a building. The chemicals it was made up of reacted with the emissions of the cars that drove past and helped to clean the air of pollution. Life Research Group proposed excellent opportunities to really make work that means something and helps the world. This was also hugely collaborative and international.
I chose Contested Territories as it grabbed me instantly and is wholly relevant to my practice and what I am passionate about. The option gives lectures on the female body as a contested territory and the violence of war, sex and gender. It also discusses borders and migrants, and the psychoanalysis of trauma and place. The lecture was powerful and struck a chord. Not only in relation to gender issues but also migration and borders with the war in Syria and the devastating vote for brexit. The need for everyone to empathise with the human suffering is pivotal during these times.
At my tutorial I spoke of how I have decided to continue my research into gender equality, and the differences between, despite being worried about being typecast. I intend to start by looking into the effects of gender stereotyping and expectations have on little ones be it via family, environment and objects, and visual language within the confines of society. We relayed different conversations we had heard to children and the difference in the language used to talk to each sex. I was given some reading pointers and plan to make a visual diary to back up my thoughts, experiences and reading. It was discussed how it is essential for my work to be accessible and how this will not be an easy task. I risk treading on close relationships and need to keep ethics in mind, for all that, it is also important work. I am eager to begin to unpack this contention and additionally the journey. I do not know how this work will manifest; what context? What medium?