Keynote 2: Prof. Andrew Kötting

Wednesday 7 September, 2016.

By Gaby Smith and Zoë Shacklock


‘B’ is for Body.


Prof. Andrew Kötting presents the keynote for the day, giving the conference a flavour of his work in film and art through the making of short films. In his words, these explore how we unconsciously or unconsciously manipulate our mind to omit certain moments of our lives. Commencing the panel by discussing some of the more personal and intimate moments of life, and the detail in his and his daughter Eden’s story, were accompanied by black and white family photos of a father and daughter.

Through presenting the notion of memories as fictions, there is, as Kötting observes a double translation at play. He discusses the way memory translates experience, but how these artistic outbursts translate the memory. In exploiting and exploring his work explores the truth of human relationships, as well as approaching the arts as a type of knowledge, as science as a type of knowledge, and as religion as a superstition, a myth. He notes that there are no wrong answers in artistic truth, because there are no right questions.

In referring to John Carey‘s work, ‘What Good are the Arts?‘, he urges the audience this morning to go tell the story of your life- however difficult this may be. When one’s life is so intwined with the care of someone else, entering into Eden’s world can in part, be a device for holding the whole thing together. After all, he comments, what else is art but the intensely public sharing of experiences and ideas?

Eden and Andrew’s film The World is full of Stupid Men (2014), laid bear questions hidden by answers in what is worth is worthwhile, and in this art and the film form, without it we are lost. Collaborating with Glen Whiting, Eden’s drawings and sketches were brought to life through animation, and a 3minute film entitled It’s all in the mind was made. Eden saw her art move.

In articulating together the boundaries, culture, systems of art and the process of making projects with his daughter, it is clear that for Eden, art has installed a sense of achievement and worth- she also likes to write on her drawings and paintings, text that changes how the viewer may respond to the image.

Daughter, agent, and catalyst.



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