Dana Claxton

Associate Professor

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Graduate Student Supervision

Doctoral Student Supervision (Jan 2008 - Nov 2019)
Transforming curatorial practice: Envisioning and nourishing ethical-creative-archival ecologies of connectedness (2013)

In my dissertation, I uniquely and through sustained public reasoning develop a rationaleand vision for curation as an ethic of care and connectedness responsive to the transformativeand ethical power and potential of creativity. I envision and illuminate my ethical re/memberingand re/orienting of curation beyond the dictates of the artworld-academic post/industrial complexwhile critically and creatively addressing many of its narratives, practices and formations. Idelineate connectedness as reverence for creative-archival intelligence and preciousness of ourshared humanity with the earth and cosmos—all life. Through connectedness as an ethic andframework, I open up the experiential and epistemic bases of curation, from artworld andscientism-shaped grounds of thought to narratives of culture and technology.I illuminate curatorial processes and relations pertaining to internal journeying, relationswith others, and the earth, inclusive of and going far beyond museological and art historicalconcerns, by expanding contexts and modes of personal and social cognition of creativity,culture, and archiving. This illumination is achieved by holding together participatoryunderstandings of consciousness and ethics and interrelational conceptions of creativity andarchiving. Experientially connective ecologies of creativity, culture, and archiving are exploredto elaborate the world-involving, embodied bases of cognition, and how materiality, empiricism,emotions and value are entangled.I clarify the intersections of science as a lens of modernity and hegemonic notions ofarchiving to make the case that opening up delineations of science, ethically andepistemologically, is as integral to transformative curatorial practice as the rethinking of culturein integrative and connective terms. My grounding of science within human experience and thus value and the elaboration of the moral agency of the body and senses grids my elaboration ofmeaningful connection between modes and forms of archiving, scientific and artistic, psychicand physical, including key constructs utilized to understand and shape knowledges. In making acase for emotionally healthy, sensuously alive, intellectually non-coercive creative-ethicalarchivalecologies, I correlatively develop a vision-practice of curation as a transformative ethicof care. Such an ethic affirms learning and growth, purpose and passion, connection andresponsibility.

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