Panni Loh
Artist - Panni Poh Yoke Loh

07913 915783

The role of art as social medium and direction for women's art practice - 01 Sep 2016

I was invited to present my creative writing Taking time to Listen at the Gwangju Folk Museum in South Korea. This was part of the International Women's Contemporary Art Forum. The presentation and writing was drawn from my experience as a live artist, painter, creative writer and social worker to question our contemporary connection with one another and the natural world. Through the medium of writing creatively about my experience of writing the paper sitting at my computer, I 'painted' a picture of the lure of my garden and all its aliveness and connectivity of sights, smells and touch. The power of digital technology draws me back to the small sphere of hand to eye coordination with a digital device posing the question that we may have become under the control of technology. I cited Britain’s Ofcom (2016), communications regulator, stating 75% of people found the internet important to their lives. Fielding-Banks (2014), a designer, an advocate of digital downtime which Ofcom reports is an increasing trend in Britain with 34% of people who had at an internet free a day at least that they found to be, in most cases a positive experience, although some felt cut off. Psychologist Price-Mitchell (2014) and Kahn (2011) advocate the importance in well being of humans and Earth if humans experience nature, even if assimilated through technology though of less benefit. I concluded that Women artists can continue to use new technologies to promote art and interaction, as long as their art is not a substitute for experiencing the natural world, but provides a doorway of exciting invitation to inspire humans to commune with nature. This is only valid if women artists themselves spend connected time in the natural world ,without technology, as inspiration to create art about the natural world.