My studio practice has developed within and investigates the mediums of collage, assemblage, installation and sculpture. Its primary focus is the philosophical category of the self: I have used methods and approaches of ethnography as part of a practice that explores my own identity as an artist.
My activity has been inspired by masks and medical moulages, as well as the technoloies and apparatuses of nineteenth century medicine and theirmuseum display, the tradition of vanitas painting and the aesthetic techniques closely associated with avant-gardism of the early twentieth century such as the ready-made.
My interests philosophically lie in exploring the realms of identity, personal history, and conscious–or unconscious–ness through the intersections of art and science.
I have been making experimental work inspired by methods of preserving the human body documented in the medical museum, framed by the aesthetics and discourse of the vanitas. These practical and theoretical explorations have raised questions such as: to what extent does the head represent the self or express personality? And are there other parts of the body that raise similar issues of identity and subjectivity?
What has emerged from my academic and practical research is an understanding of how we interact with specimen display within the contexts of the art exhibition and medical display, and its relationship to questions of self and subjectivity. This is my proposed project for the next year: to explore the interstices of art and science, and develop a deeper understanding of my self and my practice in the process.
Public and community engagement forms a large part of my practice, and I enable a range of art activities that includes painting – from individual work to large scale murals – assemblage using found objects, collage, and photo-transfer. My public arts commissions are usually informed by a community engagement process, and as well as public and private commissions, I undertake school residencies tailored to meet the needs of the curriculum and/or project theme in hand. I have worked with children and adults of all ages and abilities, and in institutions as diverse as schools, colleges, residential homes, museums and prisons. Projects range from one day drop-in workshops at fetes and fairs, Creative Partnerships school projects, artist residencies, and major public arts commissions.
Explore the blog “‘Interstice/Confluence” of Lisa Temple-Cox here.