New Course: Creative Practice Research

Next to our general Spacious gathering we will host a new course in creative practice reserach. Join us between 13 and 17 September, Mo,Tue,Thu, Fri 10AM-4PM. Hope to see you there.

In this course you will learn how to contribute to science form within your art and design practice. As ‘scientists of the sensible’, artists and designers can offer a ‘material thinking: the articulation of non-propositional knowledge and experience, embodied in artworks and creative processes’ (Borgdorff, 2012: 124). From this ‘craft-aspect’ or ‘making-aspect’ artist and designers can contribute to what we know and understand (Nilsson & Dunin-Woyseth, 2008: 139). This form of creative practice research differs from research on art or design that is driven by discursive methods (for example art theory). It also differs from professional art or design practices, in which the primary goal is to create an artwork or design, as well as from the material or conceptual research an artist or designer conducts in order to develop the creative work. Instead, in this course, creative practice research is understood as the whole field of academic research that is primarily driven by practice in the arts and design disciplines (i.e. practice based research).

In the first part of the course, we will collectively discuss the potentials and pitfalls of creative practice research. One could argue that the institutionalization of the creative practices is implicated in a larger context, where the dominant tendencies are towards capitalizing creative activity. It is our collective responsibility to support the opening-up of academia to worlds other than those of ‘pure reason’, while simultaneously 'step on the brake' if we near the point where institutionalization of creative practices leads to curtailment or dilution of the practice itself, or to an erosion of academic values and conventions (Borgdorff, 2012: 6).

Creative practice research presents multifaceted research paradigms using a range of different practices, methods and concepts. In the second part of the course you will learn to position yourself within this ‘field in action’ (Borgdorff, 2012: 6). You will sharpen (personal) techniques for creative practice research; you learn to organize and structure your research process; contextualize your research techniques and mirror, match and mesh them with research methodologies from other disciplines; and learn how to capture, reflect and disseminate traditional and non-traditional research outcomes (NTRO) in an academic context. At the end of the first week we will make a start with the final assignment, which you can develop during the course of the semester. This means you have to take into account time to work on this assignment between September and January.

Borgdorff, H. (2012) The conflict of the faculties: Perspectives on artistic research and academia. Leiden, NL: Leiden University Press.

Nilsson, F., & Dunin-Woyseth, H. (2008). Some notes on practice-based architectural design research: Four ‘arrows’ of knowledge. Reflections, 7: 138-147. Retrieved from pdf