Hi everyone, my name is James Franklin. I am currently in my last session of university, coming to the end of a three and a half year stint in a Bachelor of Communication and Media Studies majoring in Digital Media and Communication and International Media and Communication. I’d say my favourite activity is thinking, mainly because my attempts to then execute said thoughts in reality don’t always translate fantastically. This might sound a bit weird but it might be explained in the fact that my main passion lies in creative pursuits, at the moment primarily focusing on electronic music and sound in general. Amongst a series of originals I have also written tracks for some advertisements for the university and am currently busy writing some music and sound designing for a film made by a friend’s production company. I also have a keen interest in filmmaking and art in general. At this stage I feel like a jack of all trades, master of none but I hope to find my calling in future explorations outside of university.
I guess that leads on to my interest in focusing on art and aesthetics as a research topic. What draws me to the topic is the discussions that we’ve had in previous subjects on the idea of an “Imagined Asia”, a byproduct of orientalism. I came across an interesting discussion of the notion when looking at racial profiling in the media for a subject last session. This discussion was held by Fatima Al Qadiri, who made an album called Asiatich that she created using just her perceptions of what Asia should sound like, thereby highlighting a collection of dislocated stereotypes that have become so strong in western culture that they have created an independent “environment, a value system, a very rich and disturbing narrative”. I think it would be interesting to take a look behind this curtain that “the west” have created to see if artists are ignoring this Imagined Asia in their art or using it, as a diving board or otherwise.
Looking forward to reading all your thoughts over the session.