L3 Tutorial: Ariadne Xenou: From the synthesis of theory and practice to a methodology that serves both | Ways to limit/extend, control and manage your research

Today I sat in on Dr Ariadne Xenou’s L3 tutorial, the last in a series on research and covered the following topic: From the synthesis of theory and practice to a methodology that serves both | Ways to limit/extend, control and manage your research. I merely observed and didn’t take part in the discussion.

The L3 students gave Ariadne feedback on how they were synthesising, or relating their CS to their BOW and I found the in-depth discussion around the various students’ work very interesting.

Ariadne shared three points:

  1. Synthesis is not about expressing something in two different languages. It should be thought of as using the same language, but in different dialects. One should not be too literal.
  2. Some guidance around the literature review – this document is very individual and will differ entirely from student to student. Its needs to work for you with the aim to help get you further along. Its a start to form a solid foundation for the thesis, aim is to get you to engage with the references/texts. Its very personal.
  3. The sign of an early research is someone who has amassed a lot of information. That means the information or narrative you are looking for is in there somewhere. (This is something that I encountered with my A4 research, so I can totally relate to this). Its better to have too much rather than too little research. When doing a draft or redraft its better to have more and whittle it down to the required word count. This refines the methodology and helps fine tune the grand narrative.

Amano shared some of the challenges he was experiencing in fine tuning his thesis. I was particularly interested because it involved history with a reference to the Anthropocene. He had mentioned the history in the first part of the essay and of course the geography and was introducing theories of place.  The second part of his essay was the challenging bit for him as he was trying to be more analytical and had introduced the concept of psychogeography as a different way of looking, but found that there needed to be more of a contemplative aspect introduced to the essay. He mentioned the work of Ian Sinclair and Nadav Kandar (Dust).

Doug raised the question in CS to what extend does one need to reference contemporary photographers. Ariadne replied with her academic hat on that although there is a drive to reference contextual work, this can be problematic. History informs contemporary works and those connections should be highlighted. One does not look at things in a void. One’s methodology needs to stand up. As long as there is a reason for referencing historical or even other disciplines like engineering etc., it will be fine to use. It will be worthwhile to pre-empt this and introduce the methodology and state the scope of the work.

Anna mentioned the TPG’s artist talk video on Anton Kusters and remarked that his work is an excellent example of how research/theory/practice come together and the methodology then follows through to the presentation and exhibition.

The next tutorial will be on 20 July 2020 at which stage I hope to be on L3 and will be able to contribute to the discussion. My thanks to Ariadne for letting me sit in and observe. Much appreciated!!

One thought on “L3 Tutorial: Ariadne Xenou: From the synthesis of theory and practice to a methodology that serves both | Ways to limit/extend, control and manage your research

  1. Pingback: Weekly Check In – 23 May 2020 | Lynda Kuit Photography: Documentary – Fact & Fiction

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