Life Through Materiality

‘It is in this sense that the environment of private objects and their possession (collection being the most extreme instance) is a dimension of our life which, though imaginary, is absolutely essential. Just as essential as dreams. It has been said that if dreams could be experimentally suppressed, serious mental disturbances would quickly ensue. It is certainly true that were it possible to deprive people of the regressive escape offered by the game of possession, if they were prevented from giving voice to their controlled, self-addressed discourse, from using objects to recite themselves, as it were, outside time, then mental disorder would surely follow immediately, just as in the case of dream deprivation. We cannot live in absolute singularity, in the irreversibility signaled by the moment of birth, and it is precisely this irreversible movement from birth towards death that objects help us to cope with.’

-Jean Baudrillard

 

Over the last few days I have been completely immersed within writings pertaining to the theory of possession and the system of objects; and I grow more giddy with excitement with every page turn. For the longest time I had been focusing my attention solely on the psychoanalysis of collecting/hoarding; which over time has expanded into an overall analysis of possession and an objects impact on our sense of self. Much of the research that had been conducted on my part was void of any theoretical influences; or at least conscious awareness of theoretical influences. As I read through Jean Baudrillard’s book The System of Objects, much of my first-hand observations into possession have been getting backed up by his insight; most importantly the question – why we hold on to objects.

As I look through the vast array of personal possessions that I will be incorporating into my thesis installation, I can confidently say that I have a better understanding of WHY I am putting these objects into the piece; and how they directly reflect my sense of being. The process of destroying said objects has also been a cathartic experience, and I feel that the contrast between the preservation and deconstruction of my possessions will be a refreshing juxtaposition visually for the viewer. Overall I am quite pleased already prior to the installation being 100% set up; and I am even more excited to start working on future pieces to follow. Till next time.

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