Mapping Artistic Research in Film

Abstract by Jyoti Mistry

Research is core to generating an environment for experimentation, exchanges across disciplines and collaborative projects that advance knowledge production. Artistic research foregrounds the capacity of the arts to create conditions and contexts for interdisciplinary synergies that facilitate imaginative and explorative connections between artistic expression and social engagement.

This presentation offers a broad survey of the current areas of artistic research in film primarily in European film schools and/or in film programmes in arts schools. Institutional contexts are one of the drivers of artistic research and access to technology nurtures conducive research propositions. But artistic research is also informed by geo-political conditions that create opportunities to revitalise epistemological and aesthetic forms of knowledge in artistic practices. These various pulls, stretch and expand the understandings of artistic research, by drawing on the relationships between access to technology and the impact of socio-political conditions that demand inclusion of previously overlooked epistemologies and their aesthetic forms. Through some pointed examples, the presentation outlines a spectrum of artistic research projects undertaken in film and foregrounds how artistic research methodologies are developed from engagement with technology or as a way to advance ethical concerns and to explore aesthetic forms. A valuable intervention in artistic film practice is at the intersection of advancing political concerns and addressing issues of representation with access to technologies. The presentation finally invites consideration to the research milieu necessary to augment artistic research in film education.