Philippe Dinkel - Artistic versus scientific research: the challenge of the Swiss art Universities


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Philippe Dinkel - Artistic versus scientific research: the challenge of the Swiss art Universities

  1. 1. Artistic versus scientific research :the challenge of the Swiss artuniversitiesPhilippe DinkelHaute Ecole de Musique de Genève
  2. 2. • Typically, artistic research is research conducted by or with Artistsfor the Arts. No narrower definition will satisfy everyone, and somewill hold out for an even broader one. […]• An artist is a person with a talent and a passion for searchingquestions and this “searching-ness” and explorative spirit isessential to artistic activity. A creative artist is involved in apermanent search for a deeper understanding and is continuallyexperimenting with his or her own ideas and the ideas of others. Thecreative artist will often turn things upside down in order to seewhat insights the new and unconventional perspective will bring,and will lay open to scrutiny and criticism what passes forconventional wisdom. The implementation of such newly acquiredknowledge and ideas into an artist’s own musical practice can havethe effect of moving the art of music into new territory.
  3. 3. • Artistic Research done by Musical Artists means that the nature ofthe question or hypothesis is likely to be determined by the concernsand ideas that researchers have as Musical Artists. Generallyspeaking, there are four principal areas of inquiry, principal in thesense of being directly relevant both to the work of individualmusicians and to the work of music conservatoires. These areas are:• 1. Musical Production, i.e. composing and improvising music;• 2. Musical Performance, i.e. preparing and giving concertperformances;• 3. Music Teaching, i.e. guiding others in preparation of musicperformances and in understanding musical ideas and concepts;• 4. Music in Society, i.e. communicating artistic understanding andappreciation, transferring musical competences and developingconcert audiences.
  4. 4. • Artistic Research is likely to distinguish itself in regard to the kinds of questions andhypotheses investigated as well as in regard to the methods of investigationemployed. It is conceivable that traditional research questions will receive new anddifferent treatments at the hands of Artistic Researchers. Moreover, ArtisticResearchers are likely to bring themselves into the investigation as the object ofresearch. Instead of taking the stance of the distant “objective” observer, theArtistic Researcher will probably set his or her own kind and level of perception asthe ultimate object of investigation as well as the standard for describing andassessing musical phenomena.• As the research questions of interest to Artistic Researchers will tend to emergefrom and depend on the current state of knowledge, skills and experience theybring to their profession, Artistic Research is likely to reflect the debates, interestsand concerns of the art world in which the particular artist is working and to whichshe or he wants to make an original contribution. The musical artist will oftenapproach research in a manner that is related to his or her own artistic ambitionswithin his or her art world, and will tend to produce research that is driven by asense of application, that is by the motivation to turn research into artisticproducts.
  5. 5. Livret de mise en scène des Maîtres chanteurs de Nuremberg de RichardWagner pour les représentations au Palais Garnier, BnF-BMO [B 366 (1)].
  6. 6. Détail de « L’atelier de Sachs », maquette du décor d’Amable pour lepremier tableau de l’acte III des Maîtres chanteurs de Nurembergde Richard Wagner à l’Opéra de Paris (1897), BMO-BnF [maq 299].
  7. 7. Autres archives décisives: les maquettes et photographies de costumes
  8. 8. • …Towards a radical academy. Toward a radicalconservatism. Towards a distinctive researchculture within it, a culture which examines andunderstands its own assumptions, whichproduces new knowledge, and which is nolonger ashamed to be located within theacademy. A research culture which is distinctfrom advanced practice in the professionalworlds of art… (Sir Christopher Frayling, 2009)