Potentials for a Collective

Paula Doherty, Sculpture & Environmental Art

An aspiring pro of ceramics, podcasting and video art, with work revolving around key themes of the more-than-human*, and the potentials for a collective** based upon this non-hierarchical consideration of other earthlings. These themes manifest in my practice through dabbles with clay, photography and performance art, with projects testing the waters of, and sometimes physically involving, the exciting possibilities of cross-entity collaborations.

The key to a functioning collective, according to Bruno Latour, is the finding of a common communication method between all members. Based on this not yet being established in the world, my work aims to explore and challenge the potentials for a common and cross-entity understanding, and I try to represent the more-than-human in a collaborative and non-intrusive manner. My practice intends to openly address the paradoxical context of my attempt to bridge the human/more-than-human gap whilst this work is still only perceived from and presented to a human perspective. By creating an engaged experience for this human audience, I hope to instigate an informed increase in open-mindedness towards the natural world.

For degree show I have presented these thoughts through some interactive drinking ceramics, a projection of peeing in the sea, and a podcast which is also available here.

Basically I’m all about seeking a fluid and ethical standpoint from which I can place myself as a human amongst a wider world to find out what it means to be an equal rather than an assumed dominant in this extensive community of others. I use my practice as a productive outlet for this exploration and a conceptual space to keep things cool and leafy green.

*more-than-human: a term coined by David Abram which refers to any non-human entity in the natural world, in order to reduce the commonly present human/non-human binary.

**the collective: a fluid community theorised by Bruno Latour which involves a cross-species, cross-entity construct and is based upon what an individual has to offer rather than hierarchy

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