There seems to be a really ingrained assumption that it is the ability to verbalise the conceptual thinking behind a piece that makes it ‘important’. Why do we believe this? In practive it means that hierarchies and snobberies within the art school stop interesting things from happening, as everyone sticks to their ‘tribe’. Even within Design Communications there is a sense that some subjects are ‘above’ others. Designers have the ideas, illustrators just do what they are told, decoration is somehow ‘mindless’ etc.
Playfulness and enjoyment in creating, exploring materials and learning in a haptic way are demeaned at the expense of verbalising and intelletualising what we do. Although I can see the value in being articulate, being able to say what you mean and talk about how your work came about. I feel there is a need for more ‘academic’ recognition that something sophisticated is going on cognitively when you draw or make something. This is partly what the visual essay project is about- exploring new ways of framing conceptual thinking.