Sunday, May 16, 2010

I-Thou Ceramics

I already posted all of this work earlier this week, but it was on display for a short time on Friday so I took a picture of it. Putting the work on display does something interesting to it, I think. I can't wait to install my pieces in the show that's opening this coming Friday!

I came up with some good ideas about my thesis topic (for future research) while I was talking about my ceramics. I've recently been thinking a lot about "I and Thou" by Martin Buber - I read it a long time ago in two separate classes ("Art Theory" and "Modern Jewish Philosophy"). I think about having I-It relationships verses I-Thou relationships with my artwork, and how that plays into the whole processing response art thing that I've been doing.

It also relates to my ceramics - I don't just make an object and then it's done. I interact with my artwork after it's finished being made: my ceramics will be used (in fact I used them at a suedah shlishi I hosted yesterday at my house), my paintings will be processed through poetry and future paintings/objects, etc. So maybe that's an I-Thou relationship.

If I remember correctly the difference between I-It relationships and I-Thou relationships is if the object of the relationship (either another person or an actual object) gives back and the "I" receives that in some way. This came up in Art Theory because we tried to figure out how someone could have an I-Thou relationship with an artwork (I didn't get it at the time) and I think it came up in Modern Jewish Philosophy because we talked about having an I-Thou relationship with G-d.

Anyway, interesting stuff, maybe too philosophical for the art therapy world but maybe not! I have a lot further to go with my thesis topic - though my thesis is done, I plan on turning it into articles, workshops, and presentations. My goal is to present at the 2011 American Art Therapy Association conference!

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