About

Charlotte Dorn, PhD in the Arts

Empathy for the animal in contemporary art – A critical review of European, contemporary artworks on the theme of the human-animal relationship from the viewpoint of an aesthetics of care.

The aim of the project is to develop an aesthetic practice and theory based on empathy. The theory will be developed through the artistic practice. I will integrate methods of compassion training in science like „Cognitive based Compassion Training“ in my creative process and register the experience through writing and drawing. The knowledge gained through the creative process, combined with ethical and aesthetic theory will lead to an aesthetic concept based on a sympathetic understanding of the used material and imagery.
In a second step, this concept serves to reevaluate contemporary artworks made in Europe that treat the theme of the human-animal relationship, e.g. by using living or dead animals or depicting them. The point is to present an aesthetic concept that focuses on a more attentive and sensitive handling of artistic material, as well as presenting a possibility to integrate compassion training in creative processes. The consideration of the material is particularly important when working with living beings or also regarding questions on pollution and sustainability.

  • Supervisor: dr. Lut Pil (KU Leuven / LUCA)
  • Co-supervisor: dr. Violette Pouillard (University Ghent)

Research unit: Image.

Duration: 2021 - 2025