“[A line is]... a point that sets itself in motion... The most highly-charged line is the most authentic line because it is the most active.” ---Paul Klee, “Contributions to a theory of pictorial form,” 1921
MOTION & EMOTION, OR THE ART OF BEING MOVED
of being moved and to the destination itself, generating new responses to place and displacement.
Conventionally, art forms such as painting, drawing, sculpture and photography have been considered static, less concerned with motion than time-based media such as film, video, kinetic sculpture, and performance art. In Motion & Emotion, we challenge this presumption and argue that the so-called static art forms can expand our understandings of mobility. Specifically, we are interested in the dialectical relation between movement and affect – motion and emotion – as interpreted in broad terms.
Third, while media such as painting and drawing conventionally demonstrate an intentional relation between motion and emotion because marks are created by the authorial movement of the artists’ hand in order to elicit a specific emotional response, experimental methods of mark making complicate this association. If the motion of non-human others such as trees, shadows, remotecontrol cars, or stochastic computer algorithms can generate an artwork, what can be said about the affective response the artwork elicits? Can algorithms evoke emotions?
We suggest that movement and affect intersect in at least three registers, beyond the mere pictorial evocation of motion or stasis. First, art can interrogate how the rhythms of movement or absence of motion in a landscape or cityscape evoke a particular mental and emotional state. Whether the zombie-like condition of mass commuters, or the disquieting stillness in an artic landscape, the dynamics of environment have profound psychological effects. Second, in this age of hypermobility, space-time compression and globalised culture, contemporary artists themselves have become mobile subjects, makers in motion across continents and climates. Brian Massumi observes that the body “moves as it feels, and it feels itself moving.” Artists respond to both the feeling
These approaches hint at a deeper relation between movement and affect. In Motion & Emotion, we wish to bring attention to these possibilities and provide intimations towards an art of being moved. Hannah Quinlivan (Australia) January 2014 INSTINC artist-in-residence Sep – Oct 2013