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Alison Thomson_Rosella Spider Orchid 2013 Cottlesbridge.jpg

Alison L. Thomson

Alison Thomson is an independent artist, researcher and writer. In 2013 she completed a Master of Fine Art by research at Monash University. This project explored the potential for art practices to dismantle and transform identity in conjunction with philosopher Luce Irigaray's concept of the 'sensible transcendental'. Identity or 'subjectivity' comprises mind, will, emotion and speech. (See PDF attached below or hardcopy at Monash University library.) Irigaray's essentialist position entails that males and females, and the categories of the masculine and feminine, are different and equally valuable. For Irigaray, 'sexual difference' is the first difference from which all other differences arise. Alison Thomson's recent artworks attempt to symbolise a synergetic balance of the masculine and feminine, essence and existence (energy), compassion and wisdom. This balance, in its ideal form, can be experienced as true 'subjecthood'. Thomson's central idea is that the conventional 'masculine' and 'feminine' only become divine (the good) through synergy. Synergy implies effort or work (along with grace) to transform dual categories, not collapse into a singular undifferentiated whole. In an absence of intentional synergy, these forces are potentially destructive (ie. all separate - uses power for self and instrumentalises the other) and/or devouring (ie. all one - boundary-less, incorporates the other and their work, disavows sovereignty and feigns care for others, including children, to obtain attention or status). In addition to philosophy, Thomson's current research draws on native orchid conservation, Orthodox Christian art and mindfulness practices which align with the Christian wisdom tradition.


Image: Rosella Spider Orchid - rear view, by Alison Thomson 2014. The photograph shows the flower in first bloom.


*Please note all artworks, images and text included on this site are subject to copyright laws.

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