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Essaying art: An unmethodological method for artistic research

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Science must articulate its sources, as well as its relevance and its context, and it must provide clear argumentation. Furthermore, it is strictly bound to academic and ethical rules. Art is not constrained by these methods, ethics or rules. In the relatively new field of artistic research, science and art are integrated. However, the definition of this institutionalized field, and the methods and evaluation criteria of its output are debated. Can the scientific and artistic approaches be integrated into one coherent working method? The essay inherently embraces both the artistic and the scientific approaches. It drifts between the subjective and the objective, the experiential and the intellectual. The essay expresses a train of thought, and critically reflects on those thoughts: it experiments and speculates. What if artists were to use the essay as an unmethodological research method? The artistic researcher approaches the topic of investigation, as it were, essayistically: essaying art. The expression of this act of essaying can encompass all possible artistic media, and all possible combinations of media.
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Keywords: Adorno; art and science; artistic research; essay; performance; unmethodological method

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2020

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  • Empedocles aims to provide a publication and discussion platform for those working at the interface of philosophy and the study of communication, in all its aspects. This Journal is published in cooperation with the Section for the Philosophy of Communication of ECREA, the European Communication Reserach and Education Association.
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