Joshua Singler

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Reframing.

The broader field around my initial intervention is all about bringing the outside in. This week I got access into the printmaking studio. During my time in the printmaking studio, I purposefully decided to print using peoples registration sheets and off prints/scraps. OCCUPY THIS GALLERY started out as wanting to be a prompt for my peers to interact and make this space our own. In addition, it aimed to generate a discussion around the public gallery/museum and to examine traditional/popular ways of exhibiting design and art.

I felt that deciding to print on top of these somewhat anonymous, messy, iterative test prints of other student’s work in the building, I am directly involving these students’ in a discourse of participation without consent. The topic of permission is a loaded one when looking into the concept of ‘Design for Deoloniality’. 

In addition to the prints, I decided to leave the space around the installation messy. I left writing utensils, paper, hooks, tape and various other things to create a sense of action/motion towards this topic from a broader sense, to begin to create more of a community within our cohort and school in general. Putting up an open/closed sign and other visual queues were in hopes that others would participate in showcasing work in this gallery space I was beginning to create. 

One thing that really struck me while I was reframing this appendage into a proposition sketch was the reaction of my cohort. Several of my peers commented while I was working things like “Oooh artsy!” and other responses alluding to these additions to my appendage as “art”. 

This got me thinking that perhaps the problem lies more within how we as creatives define art and design and how we distinguish it. Does this influence/affect the spaces where we see our work inhabiting/being showcased? How do we value art and design differently? 

I recently was getting a tattoo and spoke with the artist who so happened to have gone to Emily Carr on and off for about 7 years, to eventually be kicked out. We didn’t get into those details but we did get on the topic of the cross-department collaboration. I know that a mixed/interdisciplinary design/art master’s program was offered in the past at ECUAD, however, I think what my conversation with Cole (the tattoo artist) was about, is the clear siloing of the different mediums/disciplines on campus. So, another topic has made itself relevant in the early weeks of exploration–collaboration.

This week was a bit much for me mentally. I was supposed to present in front of the class and have my peer review but after getting everyone into my studio space, ready to speak, I opened my mouth and broke down. Reflecting back on it I think it was necessary. I had to take a step out and recenter myself before I could think about how I was going to proceed forward with my research.

Joshua Singler