Methods 2017-18

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Outcomes 2018:

Texts on the Practice:

(please upload here)

File:180509 LHH-ToM.pdf (Lili)

File:MM txtonpractice.pdf (Matheline)

File:It didn't start with a flat surface 2 small.pdf (Josje)

File:The withdrawer.pdf (JLL)

File:Janis Dzirnieks - Text on the Practice, 2018.pdf (JanisDz)

File:TextonMethods MerveKilicer2018.pdf

File:Marco Rizzardi, text on method.pdf

Edited samples of writing produced this year:

(please upload here)

File:LHH-CompiledEditedText-BobbyJakobMarco.pdf - Edited text by Lili Huston-Herterich (sources: Marco Rizzardi, Bobby Sayers, Jaokob Forster)

File:Marco Rizzardi - editing session 28.06.2018.pdf

File:Josje Hattink editing methods 28 May 2018.pdf

File:A matter of tone.pdf (JLL)

File:Lili text Storm MerveKilicer edit.pdf

File:Last Methods EDIT 2018.pdf

METHODS 2017-18

Led by Kate Briggs, Bernd Krauss, Mike Sperlinger and Nina Wakeford

In this course students identify and share the research methods they currently employ in their practices while also engaging with and testing out new ones. We will be discussing the very idea of ‘method’ (What counts as a method? When is it useful to recognize and affirm an action as a method?) as well as the very idea of ‘research’ (What counts as research within an artistic practice? What role does research play in your own art-making? What does it do or not do? How to describe and present your ‘research’ activities?). Working both individually and collectively, students will undertake and reflect on a sequence of practical research tasks involving (for instance): reading, writing, making, looking, listening, improvising, planting and playing. In the process, they will elaborate their own individual answers to these questions – answers that are meaningful in terms of the practice and can be communicated to others. In addition to the work produced in each day-long session, the outcome of the seminar is a Text on Method (1,500 words), submitted in May 2018, which forms the basis of the First Year Self-evaluation Assessment.

Eight sessions led by Kate Briggs with Mike Sperlinger, for whom writing is a means to record, support and contextualize other kinds of research and artistic activity, a tool to think with as well as a material practice in its own right. These sessions will almost always involve some reading + the production of text, as well as the related practices of note-taking and annotation, live / silent / individual / collaborative editing and revision. In this way, our sessions prepare students for writing the Text on Method in spring 2018 and for the longer writing component (8,000 words) which is written in the second year.

Four seasonal, practice-based sessions led by Bernd Krauss (under the heading of, ‘RRRRRealities) will explore some moments of pre-creation, in which we, without preconceived ideas or interests, look closely at specific (mediated) realities. Questions include: How do we approach an unknown territory? What kind of tools or methods can be used, and/or be found, that allow us to experience, sense, and track particles of the real that we may not already understand? We will speculate that collecting and gathering particular types of information within specific parameters can grant us a kind of authority about the microscopic realities we encounter. This will allow us later to question, build on, transform, modulate, practice and create with a certain rooting in an unfamiliar environment/territory, thus exposing ourselves (and audiences) to moments of education and understanding.

Learning Outcomes

- Identify and / or invent and actively test a wide range of methods available to artistic practice. - Reflect on, discuss and communicate with authority the role that research plays in one’s practice. - Establish a meaningful descriptive vocabulary for the materials, questions, concepts and forms inherent to one’s practice (in preparation for the graduate research project). - Identify and test a wide range of approaches to writing in English, considering questions of form and mode of address (in preparation for the writing component). - Engage meaningfully with the work of others, through conversation and collaboration.


Assessment for this course is based on the Text on Method (submitted in May) as well as year-long, meaningful and productive engagement with all activities.

Session 1: A HANDFUL OF WORDS with KB

Discussion: How does 'research' figure in your practice? What does the term 'research' mean to you?

Activity: A Handful of Words

Identify a handful of keywords important to or currently in circulation around your practice. Produce your own definitions of these words, finding ways of answering the following questions:

What is the current meaning for you, in terms of your practice? What are its older, sunken, or hidden meanings? How translatable is it? What does the word mean to others? Where is it used? Where does it live? What are its habitats? What are its synonyms? Its antonyms? What doesn't it like, what does it combine with? What does it dream of?

Methods: dictionary definition, etymology as a tool to think with, translation

Readings in the room:

Virginia Woolf, 'Craftsmanship' (1937)

Raymond Williams, Keywords (1976)

Caroline Bergvall, Meddle English (2010)

Barbara Cassin et al (eds.), Dictionary of Untranslatables: A Philosophical Lexicon (2014)


Handful of words.jpg

Session 2: AUTUMN: SIEBOLD NOT SEBALD with BK We will take a day excursion to research the life and practice of German physician and botanist Philipp Franz von Siebold, who worked for the Dutch Trading company at a trading outpost in Nagasaki, Japan. During his seven year stay he collected a wide range of plants and animals from a country that had been keeping its secrets pretty closely guarded. In Leiden, we will find plants Siebold brought back to the Netherlands, at the Botanical Garden, and in the Siebold House museum, we’ll see his collected efforts to learn about and define Japanese fauna and flora. On our way back to Rotterdam, we will visit the Japanse Tuin in Den Haag, to witness its autumn colouring.

Session 3: CLOSE (and distant?) READING with KB

Two activities interrupting each other and returned to repeatedly (each time using different methods) over the course of the day:

1. Close reading and looking (in writing) of vegetable matter (working individually) 2. Close reading and looking (in writing) of an artwork (working in pairs). Two artists will make a close reading of an artwork of importance and interest to another artist in the room.

Outcomes at the end of the day:

1. Live readings of vegetable matter texts - these may be edited and synthesized together to form collaborative works 2. Presentations of the close reading 'gifts'


All the readings / instructions we followed are here: File:Methods for Close Reading.pdf

1. Closeness? through observation and description

2. Closeness? through a small frame

3. Closeness? through metaphor

4. Closeness? via I.A. Richards (1924)

5. Closeness? via Francis Ponge (1948)

6. T.J. Clark (2006)

7. Claire-Louise Bennett (2017)

File:Close Reading.pdf

File:Methodology onion MerveK.pdf

File:Josje Pumpkin.pdf

File:A close reading for Lili .pdf

File:LHH Red-Cabbage.pdf

File:Close reading - Courgette - Bobby Sayers.pdf


File:CHAMPIGNON Janis Dz.pdf

File:Honey Garlic.pdf

File:Jakob Grapefruit2.pdf

File:Marco rizzardi apple.pdf

[[1]] Go to the comments section and read the comment by MevrDeDeern from Monday 6 November


Grapefruit frame.jpg

Cabbage frame.jpg



File:The Drill.pdf

Session 4: Distant Reading + Common Knowledge + Internet + Scholarship

For this session, Merve, Marco, Bobby, Matheline and Teddy have proposed a research topic of interest to them and their practice.

Working in pairs, we will research their topics for them (for each other), culminating in presentations of the knowledge we have gathered (and produced?) over the course of the day.

1. The provocation of 'distant reading'

2. What questions can we / will we / could we ask of these research topics in order to find out more?

Link to the Stanford Literary Lab pamphlets:

Link to a review of Franco Moretti's Distant Reading:

Work through the following stages:

1. Accessing 'common knowledge' - the knowledge already in the room and / or the building. What forms does 'common knowledge' take? Stories, rumours, gossip, hearsay, jokes, fables? How to tap into this? What status does it have? What are the protocols for citing it, for using it?

2. Using the internet as a published knowledge-source (anything and everything apart from Wikipedia?). What status does it have? How to access it (search-terms?) What are the protocols for citing it, for using it?

3. Accessing scholarly works (books + articles). How to tap into this? What status does it have? What are the protocols for citing it, for using it?

Final stage:

How to present (make distinctions between, hierarchize, synthesize in order to share, make a narrative about) the knowledge you have acquired and produced over the course of the day?


File:Teddy, Merve, Lili - Distant reading.pdf

File:Merve + Lili - Letter to Marco.pdf

File:BobbyMarco Zine Teddy.pdf

reflections on what we did: methods of talking to other people: File:Methods of talking to other people.pdf

Session 5: Rhythms with KB and JV

Questions to ask of life, people, objects, artworks, ideas twice-phrased:

File:Questions to ask of....pdf

1. Reflecting back on last time: drawing out the small differences between methods of talking to other people

2. Reading together File:Rhythm sampler.pdf

3. Writing about our working rhythms + routines: what happens fast (in the studio) and what happens slow? what is steady and what feels out of step?

4. Is it possible to borrow a rhythm? Scoring someone else's rhythm in order to repurpose it (see Le Guin). Artist statements re-rhythmed!

Readings in the room:

Ursula K. Le Guin, 'Stress Rhythm in Poetry and Prose', The Wave in the Mind (2004)

File:Josje answering questions.pdf

File:HJH 4-12.pdf

File:Questions 04.12.17.pdf

File:What happens fast.pdf

File:Methodology - kate briggs - rhythm.pdf



File:KB - rythm.pdf File:HJH 4.12.pdf

File:Rhythm Jakob.pdf

Winter Break Writing Assignment

The task is to re-use / re-activate one of the methods we have tested in class to generate a piece of writing of 800-1000 words.

This will involve reading back over the archive of our class.

For this assignment, you might want to return to the very first class, and write an extended definition of a keyword that you use (or others use) in relation to your practice...

You might want to perform a close reading of one your own or someone else's artworks, looking at a small part of it through a frame made from a piece of paper, or by means of a sequence of proposed metaphors...

You might want to research a topic or question of vital interest to you, by using one or more of the methods we used for talking to other people, or considering it 'distantly'.

You might want to write an extended text on your working rhythms, or borrow the rhythm of an existing piece of writing as a way of formatting your own writing about your practice...

The above are just some suggestions - there are many other possibilities suggested in the course materials.

Your writing assignment is due on Monday January 8th 2018. You can either email it to me or upload it directly here:

File:HJH winter assignment 17.pdf

File:Some thoughts on the development of a work copy.pdf


File:Methods Writing Assignment Josje Hattink The artwork as a gift.pdf

back to top:

Here are the Text on Method guidelines;

Here is the link to previous texts on method: '''FINAL VERSIONS''' deadline 6th May

Text on Method: suggestions of artists' writing

Lernert & Sanders, 'How to Explain it to My Parents' (videos):

Link to the RW&RM archive

Methods 5/2/2018 - 5 W's and a How, the list and thinking of:

File:Bobby Sayers - 5-2-2018 - 5 W’s + a How.pdf