The Phenomenology and Imagination Research Group (PIRG) was established by six artists from diverse cultural backgrounds, mostly doctorate holders, and all alumni of the Winchester School of Art. University of Southampton. Since November 2014, PIRG has invited WSA PhD candidates to participate in the group’s monthly sessions. Meetings are held monthly in the WSA PhD Study Room.
Areas of research include: the post human; maternal subjectivity and reconciliation; post/colonialism, migration/exile and the relationship between aesthetics and politics; the perception of boundaries; displacement, diaspora and post-colonialism; and collaborative art.
For the past year the group has been reading and discussing texts concerned with phenomenology, aesthetics and visual practice, with a focus on Gaston Bachelard’s writings and his research on the imagination. The initial aim was to expand the group’s knowledge and understanding of imagination and phenomenology by creating a dialogue between Bachelard’s writings and the art practices and research of the group members. This has since been extended to include other philosophers, experiential anthropologists and educationalists.