The experience of artmaking:  body, self and word as ontological environment.

Lynn Millette


Phenomenology, hermeneutics and metaphor

Relevant theories on the creative experience

Crossing over from memory and experience

A phenomenology of my consciousness: processes
of perception and introspection as they relate to my studio practice

My engagement as a creator



All of my senses are implicated in my art-making process. My paintings come from deep inside and materialise before me on the surface of a canvas as it develops. A dialogue on the creative process must be based on an art practice because art making represents thinking in the language of creation.

I am very close to a phenomenological consideration of temporality as I paint. Experience and time are visible in the brush marks of a painting. My creative process is phenomenological when I consider and associate the things that I perceive while focusing on my senses. I know that I can decide whether or not I am open to awareness of my organism and as I record my physical state, metaphors emerge in the form of mental images. Opening my perception to the world around me constructs my sense of self. Learning about the interrelationship between the outside world and my body allows me to understand my perception and how I change an internal idea into an image.

Language can bring implicit experience into the world but I cannot address someone on the outside in the same manner that I think when I am creating. For this reason I believe that there is an inner language that allows for the associations that become metaphors. When I am creating I have an awareness that cannot be translated into words or images. Inside my mind, images are fleeting and intertwined with emotions and my organism, but they can cross over to the outside directly through my relationship with a material to become a part of reality that can be rationally interpreted and transformed.

The bridge that I cross from inside to the outside when I make art is not the same as the bridge I cross when I speak and write. Paintings encompass all that is being considered by perception. Ontology is within an artwork which reflects life experience.

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