STONE project.

STONE project is funded by: Arts and Humanities Council Logo.

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1 Introduction

YA AN Long Dou Da Gou Tou Quarry, East White Mine, China


In both art and scholarship what is ultimately achieved depends on how a subject is approached.  The chosen mode of access determines a stratum of potential.  This in turn determines what material is collected, what gets overlooked, and how it is processed. A frequent hazard is that habit or assumption can make relevant things invisible to the search.

The research structure of STONE Project grew directly out of identifiable characteristics of sculpture.  A sculptor learns quickly that any single source of information distorts one’s perception, that a fixed view is never sufficient. Knowing that our world is prone to misreading, the sculptor sees the dangers of a single point of view everywhere: in politics, demography, taxonomy; in anything that requires unreflective loyalty, membership, or initiation. Sculptors develop the habit of checking their work from different directions, under different kinds of light, and even over time.

The sculptor’s wariness of a single view leads indirectly but deftly to our own research methodology. Sculpture’s approach is peripatetic. We gather information by regularly shifting our position, learning while we are in motion. The plural approach that results from this shifting develops a double-check on every position.

Assessment from different positions finds its roots in human physiology. When we look at anything our gaze jolts from one place on the object to another. Every third of a second our eyes will ‘saccade’ or jump from place to place. Our vision is always cumulative; our knowledge of the world is built from a multitude of little fixations.  Even while this is happening our two eyes, spaced slightly apart, see slightly different scenes, and the combination of these two views confirms — simply and elegantly — a knowledge of three dimensions.


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