Relating process: accounts of influence in the life history interview
Author: Sandino, Linda
Source: Journal of Visual Art Practice, Volume 6, Number 3, 7 December 2007 , pp. 191-199(9)
Abstract:This article explores how process is narrated in artists' life history recordings. An artist's identity is entwined with his/her processes and the work. Talking about process, therefore, is also an identity story constructed under the rubric of the life history. I use the term life history in this instance to denote an audio recording that broadly spans family background, education and professional practice. Life stories refer to the bounded narratives that occur in the life history, while narrative itself, in this article, refers to the process of narration and the text it produces. This article explores how oral history interviews elicit stories which enable artists to situate the meaning of their creative processes in relational contexts arising out of events, and characters encountered in their lives. With its focus on the spoken word as the story telling medium, artists engage in making verbalized sense of their actions not only to the listener but also to themselves. It must be made clear, however, that life histories, like autobiographies, are here problematized as deeply mediated texts that do not transparently reflect their authors' intentions, nor present any immanent truths, nor construct a unified subject. The article opens with a discussion of how life histories in the visual arts are situated in a cultural context as a set of relationships, following on with a discussion of the concept of the individual relational self as a narrative strategy of identity in stories of process and making.
Document Type: Research article
Publication date: 2007-12-07
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