Autumn in the city

dissertation

Undergraduate Dissertation

BA Fine Art at York St John University

2022

rooting for hilma:

on reading a tree

in a rhizomatic way

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What you will find here is a "slightly edited" version of my dissertation. The original has been submitted at the end of January and graded by the end of February 2022.

I am proud to say that it has received a high mark. Its feedback reports that "most commendable (...) is its capacity to commit successfully to a 'divergent' method (a rhizomatic 'reading'), yet not treat it like an 'approach' — i.e. from the outside, with an omniscient narrator ready to adopt a higher, 'scientific' voice at any point to ground the propositions as merely a possible position — but as a necessity in the consideration of the work. This was a significant risk, but one that was worth it because it produces an innovative and exemplary Level 6 submission. The essay is exceptionally committed to the task of rigorous scholarship both in view of the practice and its methodological framework."

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It feels somehow strange that this project which lasted almost a year, has now come to an end. I miss reading about her; I miss the regular practice of writing and editing; and I do miss the supervision sessions. 

If I were to provide any suggestion on how to approach a dissertation this would be: read. Read extensively. Write, jot down ideas, prep notes, ask questions. Go to your supervisor with questions!

I used to send emails with drafts and questions every time we had a meeting and at the very first meeting we had, I specifically asked him to push me to get a high mark. I set the bar.

And do take a risk. If it feels right, you love the subject, are prepared, and have a good support network, do take a risk. I can promise you that it pays off.

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So: here it is.

Feel free to read it, comment on it, drop me an email, explore the ideas, provide feedback. As Rob Brezsny says, if you want to both disagree and agree with me, please do it but in respectful ways, using articulate language and offering interesting ideas. Please, remember that this is an official document that has gone through TurnItIn, so if you want to use it, you will need to reference / cite / quote properly. 

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If you want to discuss my dissertation, or the theory behind my study, the artist Hilma af Klint, Gilles Deleuze and his rhizomatic thinking, a different way to approach art "reading", the freedom to define yourself as an artist and place yourself professionally in a freer and more open category - still, with no labelling... - drop me an email.

Hope you enjoy the reading,

Matilde