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Entanglement and the Inner Feminine as Artistic Practice: Hillary Irene Johnson - MAHB

Wednesday, November 15, 2023 6:39 PM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

Entanglement and the Inner Feminine as Artistic Practice

Hillary Irene Johnson | October 19, 2023 on MAHB

Now that I am deep into the final year of my MFA in Photography at Columbia College Chicago, I find I’m reflecting on the problematic nature, the constraining potential of what the rational, well-ordered, intellectual, academic, rectilinear, traditionally masculine modes of thinking, doing and making. I am also researching models of success both out in the world and from an interior perspective. I wonder how I (and others if they like) might reframe experience and path from these masculine modes and views of success to those more feminine in nature, more internal processes, heroine’s journeys of transformation for the good of myself, for the good of all beings. 

I’m thinking a lot about entanglement, of our collective dilemmas and how we might move forward, borrowing Donna Harroway’s notion of a new period we have the potential to enter into, what she calls the Chthulucene. In her book, Staying with the Trouble (1), she writes:

“Chthulucene is a simple word. It is a compound of two Greek roots (khthôn and kainos) that together name a kind of timeplace for learning to stay with the trouble of living and dying in response-ability on a damaged earth. Kainos means now, a time of beginnings, a time for ongoing, for freshness. Nothing in kainos must mean conventional pasts, presents, or futures. There is nothing in times of beginnings that insists on wiping out what has come before, or, indeed, wiping out what comes after. Kainos can be full of inheritances, of remembering, and full of comings, of nurturing what might still be. I hear kainos in the sense of thick, ongoing presence, with hyphae infusing all sorts of temporalities and materialities.”

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