Pieced together: Collage as an artist’s method for interdisciplinary research

Kathleen Vaughan

Abstract


As a visual artist undertaking doctoral studies in education, the author required a research method that integrated her studio practice into her research process, giving equal weight to the visual and the linguistic. Her process of finding such a method is outlined in this article, which touches on arts-based research and practice-led research, and her ultimate approach of choice, collage. Collage, a versatile art form that accommodates multiple texts and visuals in a single work, has been proposed as a model for a “borderlands epistemology”: one that values multiple distinctive understandings and that deliberately incorporates nondominant modes of knowing, such as visual arts. As such, collage is particularly suited to a feminist, postmodern, postcolonial inquiry. This article offers a preliminary theorizing of collage as a method and is illustrated with images from the author’s research/visual practice.

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