Week 1 constellation – expressing the unseen: embodiment, form and art and design


So this week discussed ‘the invisible art of comics’, quality of line and yup you guessed it, embodiment.

the embodied mind
‘The best biology, psychology, cognitive neuroscience and phenomenology available today teach us that our human forms of experience, consciousness, thought and communication would not exist without our brains. Operating as an organic part of our functioning bodies, which, in turn, are actively engaged with the specific kinds of physical, social and cultural environments that humans dwell in.’

Basically our brain is in our body in the world! Although we often tend to separate our minds from our bodies ‘we postulate a “higher” self (the rational part) that must seek to control the “lower” self (body, desire, emotion)’

‘we are aware of what we see, but not of our seeing’ our brain cancels out the though process of the process making our actions feel fluid and united.

Johnson’s embodied theory of art:art makes bodily movement and feeling visible
Art makes visible the ‘ invisible’ ‘unseen’ process of embodiment (such as emotion and feeling) visible though its creation. Art is ’embodied’. This making visible is available to the viewer through the perception of the work.

a central claim of an ’embodied’ theory of art:

the study of an ‘image’ (or a line) begins from the gestures and movements of the (multi-sensory) body and not upon the study of the ‘final’ image

the biological roots to art, Nancy Aiken
“Both strong and weak responses, such as uneasiness, anxiety, tingles down the spine, increased heart rate and sweaty palm, can be evoked by art. I propose that art uses many of the same releasers that are present in natural stimulus situations to evoke these responses.”
This is the idea that things such as shape of line are biological and we automatically understand them. For example a happy cat will have a slight curve of body (a curved line we understand as happy and gentle) where as an angry cat will arch it’s back with a sharp angle (a sharp jagged line represents anger, fear ect.)

These lines i drew in the morning to describe how i felt display this theory.

Continuing with this idea I looked at people’s names, how depending on the amount of ‘curly’ and ‘sharp’ letters if the name would look friendlier and roll off the tongue better/appear aggressive and sharp.


I then related colours to this idea…



And finally I joined the two together.

Here cold colours are contrasted against soft round lines. I feel that in this image the cold colours are the most prominent and make the picture seem harsh despite the soft lines.

Here the colours are warm whilst the likes are harsh. This time I feel that the hard lines make the image seem again harsh.

Finally I combined soft lines with warn colours to create this very delicate picture.

This lecture was a really great start for the next few week and an inspiration for the essay to come!


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