Being, change and politics: the search for meaning: material and form in context of socio-political art

Anwar, R 2016, Being, change and politics: the search for meaning: material and form in context of socio-political art, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Art, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Being, change and politics: the search for meaning: material and form in context of socio-political art
Author(s) Anwar, R
Year 2016
Abstract This practice-led research project examines and researches the meaning of matter and form in the context of particular socio-political issues in art. It employs art practice as a realm to investigate the relationships between notions of change, politics and renewal.

Through this project I will develop artworks that exploit specific materials and forms in order to address philosophical, social and political issues relating to destruction, transience, being and renewal. To achieve this I will investigate and employ appropriate imagery, forms and media informed by contemporary art practice in the context of socio-political issues (displacement, trauma and political violence).

This study has been informed and developed from my own narrative, based on my background as a Kurd who has lived through the recent socio-political history of the Kurdistan region of Iraq and the Middle East. I will extend from this personal base in order to address the broader issues of suffering, disruption and renewal relating to individuals in other societies and places. In doing this, my objective is to create artworks that evoke socio-political issues whilst addressing broader issues that include the transience of being, deconstruction, renewal and hope in the world, common to all humanity. To manifest these ideas as artworks I will research and explore appropriate forms in both installation and object based practices. The work will focus on materiality, form and process as key signifiers in addressing the above content. Through the use of multidisciplinary medium this project will reveal my investigations into the physical properties of object (matter and form), and their meaning addressing cultural as well as personal references.

The project is informed by research into criticism and theory in a contemporary community of art practice which focuses on materiality and politics of the contemporary Middle East and into the philosophical concepts of “matter and form”, based on selected theories of Mulla Sadra and Martin Heidegger. My practical research is contextualised by addressing the work of relevant contemporary artists including Doris Salcedo, Hiwa K and Mona Hatoum.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Art
Subjects Performance and Installation Art
Fine Arts (incl. Sculpture and Painting)
Visual Arts and Crafts not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) Contemporary art
Installation art practice
Matter and form
Materiality in art
Form in art
Found objects in art
Photography installation
Kurdistan history
Iraq and the Middle East
Materiality in contemporary art in the Middle East
Socio-political art
Notions of change
Mulla Sadra (1572-1640), a Persian philosopher
Trauma and political violence in art
Art in context
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Created: Tue, 24 Apr 2018, 11:44:03 EST by Keely Chapman
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