Tuesday, June 19, 2012

As I consider how the International Memory Project plays into my own artist/researcher/teacher (and mom) story, through my own research also known as, MY PERSONAL "memoir" and MY PERSONAL "artmaking", I am left pondering my personal, individual Memory Project - my memories of Croy and the memoirs and images I have made to honor his identity, and also my identity as his mommy.  Here are some thoughts to ponder - I need to make sense of this and figure out how to incorporate all of this information to help me "put the puzzle together".

As an artist/researcher/teacher my search to find an authentic methodology that “incorporates tools from science and the arts to make insightful sense of data during and beyond the research project, recognizing the researchers as the “primary instrument for documenting and interpreting knowledge that ultimately informs the researcher about herself as well” and allows me to “present my final work as blurred genre that can speak to diverse audiences both within and outside of the academy” (Cahnmann-Taylor, 2008, p. 9).  A/r/tography is a methodology that is relational and responsive, a living inquiry that will allow art making processes and products to act as methods of inquiry (Irwin & Springgay, 2008; La Jevic & Springgay, 2008).  A/r/tographic practices attend to “the process of creativity and to the means through which one inquires into an education and phenomena through artistic and aesthetic means” (Springgay, et al, 2005, p. 898).
Life took me by surprise
I wasn’t supposed to lose my baby boy
                                                My joy
                                                                                                                                …my connection to all things good
But he is gone.
                                                Croy is gone.
The words melt my soul and leave me breathless
I cannot internalize that he is no longer racing off of the school bus to embrace me with his smile,
                                …his never ending love...
And now his short life informs my every move.
His life informs my daily actions, he has become my space.
 …in the art room. 
….in my studio.
…..in my life.
His marks, become my marks
                                I teach with my Croy in my heart, in my soul.
…he remains my connection
                                                                                                (Personal Journal Entry, January 6th, 2012)

A/r/tography is embracing and living an embodied curriculum (Riddett-Moore, 2011).  This body of research forms the researcher, and this is why examples of a/r/tography are difficult to absorb.  The work is not specifically visual art, it encompasses all art forms, literature, poetry, music, dance, theatre and due to its very nature, it can be explained but it must also be experienced.  According to Riddett-Moore (2011, p.22), “a/r/tography forces the researcher to bare their soul”.

dewestudio 2012 - "Memories of my Croy Series" - Collage, Acrylic, Pen and Ink, Mixed Media on plywood

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