Abstract

Bianchi, June
Great Britain
E.545 | Wednesday, 18 July 2007, 10:30 - 11:00, Room E1
More than a body’s work: an international multimedia exploration of young people’s construction of image, gender and sexual identity through the body and its appearance
The paper will explore the ways in which young people construct and ‘perform’ identity through the construction of their body and its appearance, engaging with perspectives on what constitutes identity, and investigating how young people respond to a range of socio-cultural influences, in generating and mediating identity through their body and its appearance. ‘More than a body’s work’ has as its central ethos, a commitment to inclusion and the exploration and celebration of the diversity of cultural experience, celebrating young people’s creative engagement and response to constructions of visual identity. Both the research processes and the outcomes of ‘More than a body’s work’, a collaborative media arts research project, will be disseminated in the paper. Text and image workshops, involving young people based in a diversity of statutory and community educational settings in New York and South West and North East England, raised issues and generated visual and textual material which developed into a touring interactive exhibition. Exhibition outcomes incorporated video installation, light boxes, multimedia canvases, a publication and an interactive educational programme. The ongoing project continues to involve young people as participants in the interactive programme of events which accompany the exhibition, celebrating the synthesis of local, national and international influences creatively deployed within youth culture. ‘More than a body’s work’ facilitates an inclusive approach to the arts, creating a forum for young people, who may not ordinarily have access to the arts, to be participants in the collaborative production.
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