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Reading on Reading is a series of experimental reading practices developed collaboratively by Emma Cocker, Cordula Daus and Lena Séraphin whilst working together in the Research Pavilion #3, Venice, 2019, for exploring what alternative modes of sense making are produced when reading is undertaken artistically, as an aesthetic activity. Reading on Reading explores three interrelated foci: How can aesthetic practices of reading: (1) Shed new light on the phenomenology (or how-ness) of reading? (2) Transform the often-solitary activity of reading into a shared or communal act — and explore what modes of sociality, solidarity and emergent ‘we’ emerge therein? (3) Operate as a disruptive process unsettling normative conventions of reading through focus on the poetic, affective and material dimensions of readerly experience? Within this artistic research collaboration, we consider the act of reading beyond the relation of the reader to a text read, as a micro-political or ethico-aesthetic practice through which to re-consider — perhaps even re-organise — the relations between self and other(s), self and world. Drawing upon Félix Guattari’s notion of ecosophy with its three ecological registers of environment, social relations and human subjectivity, in this exposition we consider how the modest practice of reading together could contribute to a wider ethico-aesthetic project: for cultivating shared poetics of attention, for the re-sensing of language through embodied vocalisation, for tending to the temporary gatherings of ‘we’ that reading together affords. The aim of this exposition is to share the reading practices tested and explored in and through the collaboration of three artist researchers, alongside reflection on the questions and concerns emerging within this enquiry. Whilst operating as a document or archive of a specifically time-bound research activity, the intention is that our reading practices have scope to be activated by other readers.
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