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Which clippings match 'Problem Solving Research' keyword pg.1 of 1
22 FEBRUARY 2012

Towards a critical discourse of practice as research

"A problem confronting many artistic researchers is related to the need for the artist to write about his or her own work in the research report or exegesis, The outcomes of such research are not easily quantifiable and it can be difficult to articulate objectively, methods processes, and conclusions that emerge from an alternative logic of practice and the intrinsically subjective dimension of artistic production. Moreover, conventional approaches and models of writing about art generally fall within the domain of criticism, a discourse that tends to focus on connoisieurial evaluation of the finished product. How then, might the artist as researcher avoid on one hand, what has been referred to as 'auto–connoisseurship', the undertaking of a thinly veiled labour of valorising what has been achieved in the creative work, or alternatively producing a research report that is mere description (Nelson 2004)?

In this paper, I suggest that a way of overcoming such a dilemma is for creative arts researchers to shift the critical focus away from the notion of the work as product, to an understanding of both studio enquiry and its outcomes as process. I will draw on Michel Foucault's essay 'What is An Author ' (Rabinow, 1991) to explore how we might move away from art criticism to the notion of a critical discourse of practice–led enquiry that involves viewing the artist as a researcher, and the artist/critic as a scholar who examines the value of artistic process as the production of knowledge. As I will demonstrate, in adopting such an approach, practitioner researchers need not ignore or negate the specificities and particularities of practice – including its subjective and emergent methodologies which I have argued elsewhere, constitute the generative strength that distinguishes artistic research from more traditional approaches Barrett, 2005). In elaborating the relationship between a these aspects and the more distanced focus made available through Foucault's elaboration of author function, I will draw on Donna Haraway's (1991, 1992) notion of 'situated knowledge' and her critique of social constructivism which reveals how the scientific method is implicated in social constructivist accounts of knowledge. It is this alignment, suggests Haraway,that results in the effacement of particularities of experience from which situated knowledges emerge. In order to ground and illustrate the arguments and ideas presented in this paper, I will also refer to Pablo Picasso's, Demioselles d''Avignon and a selection of critical commentaries on this work by Leo Steinberg (1988), William Rubin (1994) and Lisa Florman (2003)."

(Estelle Barrett, 2006)

Barrett, E. (2006) "Foucault's 'What is an Author': towards a critical discourse of practice as research". Working Papers in Art and Design Vol 4 Retrieved from URL ISSN 1466–4917



2006academic writingart criticismartist • artist as researcher • artist as scholar • artistic processartistic research • auto-connoisseurship • connoisseur • connoisseurshipcontribution to knowledge • creative arts researchers • creative problem solvingcreative work • critic as scholar • design processDonna Haraway • emergent methodologies • established research strategiesEstelle Barrettexegesis • finished product • Leo Steinberg • Lisa Florman • Michel FoucaultPablo Picassopractitioner researcherproblem solving researchproduction of knowledge • research report • scientific methodsituated knowledgessocial constructivismstudio enquiry • subjective methodologies • traditional research • What is An Author • William Rubin • Working Papers in Art and Design • writing about creative work


Simon Perkins
30 JANUARY 2012

Will Li-Fi be the new Wi-Fi?

"FLICKERING lights are annoying but they may have an upside. Visible light communication (VLC) uses rapid pulses of light to transmit information wirelessly. Now it may be ready to compete with conventional Wi–Fi.

'At the heart of this technology is a new generation of high–brightness light–emitting diodes,' says Harald Haas from the University of Edinburgh, UK. 'Very simply, if the LED is on, you transmit a digital 1, if it's off you transmit a 0,' Haas says. 'They can be switched on and off very quickly, which gives nice opportunities for transmitting data.'

It is possible to encode data in the light by varying the rate at which the LEDs flicker on and off to give different strings of 1s and 0s. The LED intensity is modulated so rapidly that human eyes cannot notice, so the output appears constant. ...

But some sound a cautious note about VLC's prospects. It only works in direct line of sight, for example, although this also makes it harder to intercept than Wi–Fi. 'There has been a lot of early hype, and there are some very good applications,' says Mark Leeson from the University of Warwick, UK. 'But I'm doubtful it's a panacea. This isn't technology without a point, but I don't think it sweeps all before it, either.'"

(Jamie Condliffe, 28 July 2011)

Jamie Condliffe (2011). New Scientist magazine, 23 July 2011.

Fig.1 Harald Haas, July 2011,

2). Steve Perlman "Distributed–Input–Distributed–Output (DIDO) Wireless Technology: A New Approach to Multiuser Wireless".



applied research • bandwidth • broadband over power lines • device • DIDO • DIDO technology • Distributed-Input-Distributed-Output • experimental knowledge • fiber optics • Harald Haas • inventionLEDLED lighting • Li-Fi • LIFI • light • light bulb • lightingphysicsproblem solving researchpulsesignalsolutiontechnology innovation • TED Global • TED Talks • transmitting data • Visible Light Communication • VLC • wireless data • wireless technologies • wireless technology • wireless through LED


Simon Perkins
16 JULY 2011

How and When Prototyping Practices Affect Design Performance

"How does the structure of prototyping practice affect learning, motivation, and performance? In this talk, I will describe research on iteration and comparison, two key principles for discovering contextual design variables and their interrelationships. We found that, even under tight time constraints when the common intuition is to stop iterating and start refining, iterative prototyping helps designers learn. Our results also demonstrate that creating and receiving feedback on multiple prototypes in parallel – as opposed to serially – leads to more divergent concepts, more explicit comparison, less investment in a single concept, and better overall design performance. This talk highlights relevant research in cognitive and social psychology and shares the results of our preliminary design studies."

(Steven Dow, 19 November 2009, Google Tech Talk)



applied researchcognitive psychology • common intuition • conceptualisation • contextual design • creative problem • Dan Schwartz • design performance • design studiesdesign thinkingdesignersdivergent conceptseggenquiryexperimentation • functional fixedness • Georgia Institute of Technology • GoogleTechTalk • HCIhuman-centred computinghuman-computer interactionhypothesisindustrial engineeringintuitioniteration • iteration and feedback • iterative designiterative prototyping • Karl Duncker • learning • parallel prototyping • problem solving researchproblem-solvingprototyping • prototyping practices • psychologyreal-world design • refinement • Scott Klemmerserial prototypingsocial psychologyStanford University • Steven Dow • theory buildingUniversity of Iowa


Simon Perkins

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