Creating Networks as an Alternative Imagining of a Collective Memory

Landscapes and buildings are tangible witnesses to societal evolutions through the ages. The way a community experiences these can be gleaned, for instance, from its collective memory, in which landscapes and buildings feature. The present paper introduces the use of networks to trace and visualise these special relations and connections between tangible spatial entities on the one hand and societal evolutions and historical facts on the other. This research project started from two hypotheses. One hypothesis views the network as an instrument that allows us to enter physically into a community’s collective memory. The second hypothesis states that these networks can be developed as spaces. Two cases were formulated: Forges de Clabecq, an obsolete industrial site east of Brussels, and the Meirebeek Valley, a landscape west of Ghent. Research of source material and interviews yielded data suitable for network mapping. Using the appropriate software, these networks could be subjected to various interventions and presented in a number of different forms of representation. Open Ord networks, Radial networks, Concentric networks en Isometric networks were some of the formats we used. These visualisations resulted in reflection on the subject of collective memory, two hypotheses, spatial imaginings and finally some points of criticism.

"Blau"—Longing and the Repetitions of (Deleuzian) Becoming

This article explores how Deleuzian and Guattarian concepts, in particular the notion of “becoming” and the scope of multiplicity through a “rhizomatic” development of ideas has offered a way of moving between diverse fine art media (and text) to explore “place in the making”—that is the nomadic place of “non-territorialized” being, involving both new and traditional media. The discussion will focus on a close reading of the author’s video piece “Blau” (2015, 2:43 minutes, looped), considering editing notes and peripheral material whilst referring to Freudian notions of “fort/da” and also Derrida’s idea of “différance” where meaning is always deferred through new contexts. The leitmotif of the film owes to ideas of a longing embrace of Eros and Thanatos. Repetition is used to insist, disrupt, and distort the perception of time-space relations and to aim for a visual/sonic fold juxtaposing seemingly disparate visual scenes, snippets of speech (French, English, and Arabic) encountered within ambient sound, abstract colour, and voice to reflect on the shifting grounds of actuality and virtuality.

Everted Sanctuaries: Visualizing Introversion

Eversion is a biological term for the ability of an organism to turn itself inside out. For example, a sea cucumber can eject its internal organs to distract attacking predators. The sea cucumber sacrifices some vital functions for ultimate survival. Similarly, many introverts have become adept at temporarily everting their personalities to function in extroverted contexts. This masquerade often puts great stress on an individual. Cultural, educational, and professional environments do not often provide introverts the intervals of sanctuary necessary to revitalize themselves. In “Everted Sanctuaries,” the author investigated the ability of the moving image to convey the complex needs of introverts. Informed by a framework of personality theory and psychological studies, the author visualized an introvert’s transition to temporary extrovert through object transformation, kinetic sculpture, material, stop-motion, and sound. This work was evaluated through critique and observation and compiled into an interactive exhibit. In “Everted Sanctuaries,” transformed objects become metaphors to exhibit the often-uncomfortable process of becoming uncharacteristically extroverted. Though experiential in its approach, the results demonstrate the value of image in communicating the intangible complexity of feeling and emotion. “Everted Sanctuaries” seeks to establish the importance of sanctuary for introverts and encourages understanding of personality differences.