PhD Studentship: the human body as nexus for performing arts and medicine

The proposed project will investigate, through practice-based research, the reciprocal relationship between the life sciences/medicine and contemporary visual/performing arts as it is constructed, perceived, negotiated or performed at the nexus of physical and conceptual human bodies.

At the heart of the project will be innovative forms of interdisciplinary (possibly collaborative) research, where the body in its’ real or imagined state – from cell sample to living patient or cadaver – is the central focus. The project will negotiate the creative possibilities of the intersection between activities and persons in different fields. Practice-based research, which utilises the participatory, interactive approach theorised, as ‘relational aesthetics’ by Bourriaud may be most relevant here, though no particular media is prescribed.

Research proposals with collaborators/collaborating institutions in place are welcomed, or can be built as part of the project. Every effort will be made to facilitate relationships with appropriate Departments across the University and beyond, utilising the networks of the supervisory team.

The research will be situated within emergent Fine Art research group ‘The Cultural Negotiation of Science’ which includes staff working with experts in Fundamental and Biomedical Science, Genetics and Physical Geography, whose common concerns include the foregrounding of practice and performativity across the disciplines, challenging the instrumentalisation of art in cross-disciplinary collaboration, and exploring the perceived ethical ‘values’ guiding both art and science.

The wider contemporary visual art context includes the existing field of art/science collaboration, which the project should aim to extend/challenge.
Relevant also are cross-disciplinary networks in Arts & Health, the second wave of “Critical Medical Humanities”, the interdisciplinary fields of Death Studies and Collections – based research.

The researcher will benefit from a base amongst the Fine Art, Post Graduate community at BALTIC 39 (http://baltic39.com/) established through the partnership between Northumbria University and the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art.

Enquiries regarding this studentship should be made to: christine.borland@northumbria.ac.uk

Applicants should hold a first or upper second class honours degree (in a relevant subject) from a British higher education institution, or equivalent. Students who are not UK/EU residents are eligible to apply, provided they hold the relevant academic qualifications, together with an IELTS score of at least 6.5.

To apply, contact Andrea Percival to request the appropriate application form, quoting the advert reference above, via email to ad.pgr@northumbria.ac.uk or by using the application link on this page.

Deadline for applications: 14 April 2014
Start Date: 7 October 2014

More info at findaphd.com.

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