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UAL Research Online

Acts of Endurance — A Creative Transformation in Times of Struggle in Contemporary Colombian Memory

Arango Velasquez, Maria Isabel (2015) Acts of Endurance — A Creative Transformation in Times of Struggle in Contemporary Colombian Memory. PhD thesis, University of the Arts London.

Type of Research: Thesis
Creators: Arango Velasquez, Maria Isabel

This thesis is a practice-based investigation into the articulation of pain beyond representation in contemporary art practice today – in particular the art created under the shadow of violence – conducted by prolonged actions that strive against this concept of a representational logic. Exploring the contemporary Colombian conflict as my case study, the aim of my work is to ask if it is possible to move past the existing logics of representation through a form of making, that when confronted by the distressing sensations of conflict shatters its existing logics. My visual practice is concerned with actions that embody the performative dynamics of movement, in which reality itself gets inscribed into the created images, by retaining a trace of the context that surrounds and affects what is rendered too painful to be articulated and exists silently beyond description in the work.

In Colombia, trauma has clearly become culturally transitive; it affects society as a whole through the recurring accumulation of events and the generational transmission of unprocessed histories, obstructing cultural digestion. As such, this practice-based research is situated within complex relations of contemporary culture, social forces, and past and present historical events. At present, under circumstances of constant sociopolitical conflict, this thesis argues that art must register but cannot hope to master what must be approached and confronted through prompting change by poignancy as opposed to puncture. Thus, this thesis proposes a new practical and theoretical interpretation for art practice that engages with this problematic: the reality of extreme pain, which may be forgotten by being remembered through persistent gestural actions of healing as erasure, which draw on affective levels capable of shifting subjectively a caring understanding and an elaboration of such pain.

My contribution to the field of art practice is primarily offered through my practical work, which here presents a passage to beyond through the Matrixial sphere and its healing notions of art; the objective being to form a link between remembering and forgetting by engaging acts of endurance, in which I use making as a reaction performed with-in or against the accumulated memory that exists as an active and present-negative force inside the reality of conflict and war. In and through my work I attempt an utterance, which is complicated, censored and interrupted by trauma, yet always striving to find ways to transform its ever-building burdens.

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Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Chelsea College of Arts
Research Centres/Networks > Transnational Art Identity and Nation (TrAIN)
Date: 4 September 2015
Date Deposited: 06 Oct 2015 11:58
Last Modified: 09 Feb 2024 17:07
Item ID: 8754
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/8754

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