Our studio began with I, a list of questions. At first glance, they all assumed it was simple, that what I was asking was a matter of their own perspective. ‘What do we know? What don’t we know?’ A little hesitant, everyone twitched in their places, reflecting back to the reading and admitting the context was a little too ambiguous. But I remained, confident as I watched Monique silently take my picture:
As the session progressed, Adrian had asked them to describe a granular pile of what appeared to be raw sugar. I laughed. It was a few minutes of barking ideas, pushing concepts and questioning the motive behind the discussion. It was only then, as the sugar was poured into a small plastic cup of water, that they reacted (and I dare even say, the sugar also) with sudden shock. The reading I was based upon was suddenly in action, allowing the students – including Monique – to realise the true nature of Bogost and his thoughts on the ontograph. Linking this idea, the concept of observing things ‘for themselves‘ became more immediately natural, as all the students finally realised that they must view things as things.
The studio was at pace afterwards, going through the motions of mind-mapping, brainstorming keywords and eating a large amount fruit. Sent with the task of researching a media artefact to deconstruct and research, I yearned to be resolved, angling myself to catch everyone’s eye if they peered over. I looked over Monique’s shoulder as she paused in her seat, raking her mind of possible items, brand’s and people to explore. It was then she turned and asked herself softly, ‘just how will we find this out, huh?’ I thought for a moment that she was addressing me. And I laughed again.