Masters Degrees (Visual Arts)

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 203
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    Designing for a sustain-able material future: (speculative) reimaginings of trash in Stellenbosch
    (2023-03 ) Du Preez, Kirsten; Perold-Bull, Karolien; Stellenbosch University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Dept. of Visual Arts.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Consumption and excess have become ingrained in society. We live in a world of too many things. The field of design has played a significant part in creating this world; a world which can no longer sustain itself. This research explored how design can contribute to more sustain-able material futures, specifically on Stellenbosch University campus. It did so through engaging with our thrown-away things – our trash – through critical design praxis. This was approached through a New Materialist lens. By following a practice-based, diffractive methodology comprised of reading, drawing, collecting, reflecting, making, speculating, and participating in an entangled manner, static trash became vibrant things that people could connect to throughout the course of the research process. It became clear that “physical object[s] [are] no longer an end in itself but a vehicle towards understanding the complex systems that produce it, and the even more opaque systems that dispose of it” (McGuirk, 2022). This research provides an example of how slowness, working with found materials, sym-poiesis, speculation and participation can be key concepts that constitute design praxis for more sustain-able material futures. Collaboration, imagination, playfulness, and care emerged as strategies through which to begin these explorations. In light of existing participatory and speculative design theory, the research shows that more sustain-able material futures can only be enacted through design if participation occurs between human, non-human, living, non-living, environment and object in entangled, equal ways.
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    Investigating creativity educators' transition into the digital era
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-03) Hammann, Marihet; Costandius, Elmarie; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Dept. of Visual Arts.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: With the Covid-19 pandemic, the ability of creativity educators to adapt to change has been more apparent. Flexibility in their educational approach, content, and environment, using their self-directed learning, whole-brain thinking and digital learning competencies to transition during a crisis, is on demand. This study was conducted with interest in the modifications and alterations made to instructional practices for digital learning rather than in the type of technology used or digital network failures. This study investigates the strategies, settings, and atmosphere of adult education that ecological and historical dangers like Covid-19 have altered. The urgent need for innovative solutions to problems was highlighted for new ways of continuous learning in a chaotic world. As a result, when forced to switch from traditional to digital learning, creativity educators across the globe were forced to rely on their own self-directed learning. In a Connectivism Framework, the study investigates how creativity educators made changes, what changes were made to their approach, content, and environment, what role their self-direction and thinking preference played in how and what the difference was, and what impact these had within their context. The research has taken place online with selected creativity educators based on their expert creativity knowledge and global experience on a digital platform. A qualitative case study approach was used with purposeful sampling to obtain the participants for this study. Through the Neethling Brain Questionnaire (NBI) (Phase 1), semi-structured interviews (Phase 2), and critical self-reflection by the participants using their own digital images (Phase 3), the collected data was examined. Seventeen creativity educators within different contexts, including business, educational institutions or an amalgam of business and education, participated in the study. The study concludes that creativity educators used self-directed learning, creativity and thinking preference to transition individually and collectively into the digital era. These findings help advance individual and collective 21st century digital skills. It is recommended that the educators within their collective ensure psychological safety to stretch beyond their comfort zone and meet the demands of a changing learning landscape to co-create new knowledge. Educators must alter and realign their identity and worldview to find meaningful learning in a hyper-connected online world. This requires continuous upskilling and creative mind shifts with strong network connections and collaborations.
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    Tactile revelations: investigating adult critical citizenship education in an informal art class context
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-03) McDonald, Sharne; Costandius, Elmarie; Alexander, Neeske; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Dept. of Visual Arts.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: In formal education, more emphasis is being placed on presented facts and perceived performance than on critical, lateral thinking, the creative application of knowledge and materials, and making mistakes as a learning activity. What I am suggesting is that we have become out of practice with imagining new realities through the manipulation of tangible media like graphite, paint, clay and paper. Informal art education provides a space for the creative manipulation of materials without the pressure of achieving high marks. Critical citizenship education is concerned with creating new social realities that are more inclusive and equitable in a globalising world. The research presented in this thesis investigates the potential relationship between informal art classes and critical citizenship education for broadening people’s perceptions of the world. This study attempted to answer the research question: How do adult participants experience critical citizenship education in an informal art class context? I elaborate on some of the core concepts in critical citizenship education, namely transformation and pluralism, and discuss educational theories on motivation and confidence to learn, adult (or lifelong) learning and transformative learning. Perspectives of drawing, painting, clay sculpture and origami illustrate the value of informal art lessons in teaching pluralism. The research design is a case study centred around informal art classes facilitated on Saturdays that attracted a range of informal learners who had their own motivations for attending art classes. The classes covered fundamental lessons in drawing, painting, clay sculpture and origami and participants were asked to answer three questions after each lesson as self-reflection exercises. The participants’ responses, together with visual artworks produced at the classes and in-depth structured interviews, provided data for investigating the potential relationship between critical citizenship principles and art education. Participants’ experiences varied, but a common thread was observed: the adult learners who participated in this study recognised the value of interacting with and learning from others and the applicability of art techniques to principles of everyday life. Participants faced uncomfortable situations, experienced personal growth and were further motivated by feelings of accomplishment. The research and art curriculum that was developed from this study has the potential to contribute further to the study of practical applications of critical citizenship education, specifically in informal art class environments. Its application is potentially revolutionary, as formal art education can only reach certain demographic groups at school or tertiary-level education, whereas informal learning has a much broader reach. This is especially important in the current South African context where transformation strategies have not been as successful as hoped in formal education. The curriculum that I developed may also be used by teachers as an aid to supplement or enrich current art curricula (with further development).
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    Material memories and metaphors: an exploration of textiles and clothing in coloured identity and culture.
    (2023-03) Hector, Kirsten Megan; Costandius, Elmarie; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Dept. of Visual Arts.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: My interest in textiles stems from my fondness of clothing and fashion, but more significantly, from my identity as a coloured woman. Textiles metaphorically allow me to connect with the generations of women in my family who were involved in the domestic spheres of livelihood and the textile industry. The purpose of this study was to investigate how coloured identity and culture can be influenced by and encountered through textiles and clothing. During the apartheid era, with its segregation laws, people were divided along lines of race, and coloured identity was among these. Having a unique conception of identity, coloured people were subjected to an array of challenges, such as marginalisation, shame, forced removals and designated places of employment, with the textile industry being among these. This investigation therefore served to explore the implications of apartheid for coloured identity and culture through textiles of clothing worn, textiles within the home and involvement in the textile industry. In addition, metaphorical ways of thinking about textiles and how connections can be made via the encounters are discussed. A qualitative investigation took place, whereby five women participants from the coloured demographic group and involved in the textile industry during the apartheid era were interviewed. Focus was placed on the marginalised group of coloured women who worked with textiles, but also on how implications of representation and domesticity occurred in these instances. The investigation established the importance of textiles in multiple spheres of being and that textiles play a significant role in coloured identity and culture, as it was observed to influence portrayals, aspirations and ways of being. As the past evoked some distraught sentiments, some healing capabilities were recognised through coming into contact with textiles in the numerous realms discussed.
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    Re-making to re-member: Exploring a living archiving methodology with sensory-based participatory design
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2022-12) Solomons, Ashley; Perold-Bull, Karolien; Oelofsen, Marietjie; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Dept. of Visual Arts.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The ideological system of coloniality may have woven an underlying influence of oppression into the seams of contemporary South African society. This influence of oppression has often manifested through overwhelming confrontations in everyday South African life – including violent social ideologies, a reductive visual culture, and the silencing of diverse knowledge systems. Processes of designing, archiving, and re-searching in South Africa reflect an influence of coloniality in dislocated methodologies, reductive representations of local life, and a lack of epistemic freedom. Our local practices of designing, archiving, and re-searching may be dismembered from our local ways of life and therefore may be in need of re-membering. The local digital archive, Through the Eyes of Survivors of Apartheid: Life Despite Pain and Suffering, embodies a three-fold designing, archiving, and re-search space in need of re-membering beyond reductive and inaccessible traditions. This practice-led research process therefore explored sensory-based participatory design as a potential open-ended, expansive, and accessible methodology within the context of Through the Eyes of Survivors of Apartheid: Life Despite Pain and Suffering archive. The research process flowed from three initial inquiries that centered the practices of researching, archiving, and designing. Firstly, participating actors and I explored how open-ended forms of re-searching might unearth more accessible practices of doing re-search within the context of Stellenbosch University. Secondly, we explored how open-ended forms of archiving together might invite more accessible local archiving traditions. Lastly, we explored how open-ended processes of re-making together might unearth local design methodologies and visual languages. The re-search perhaps prompts space for the continuation of existing South African life narratives in archives, acknowledges the legitimacy of local knowledges, and invites an accessible space for sharing local knowledge – both now and in future. The re-search provides an example of critically reflexive decoloniality in action. It demonstrates how sensory-based design can be employed as a means to explore a more open-ended and accessible methodology for policy makers and practitioners within the contemporary South African archiving, designing, and re-search spheres.