Before explaining the idea itself, I feel like I should provide my personal understanding of what Poetic Science actually is. To quote a description from my sketchbook: “Science often destroys the artistic factor of nature by giving explanations to things which were otherwise considred to be sources of creativity. Poetic science is a sort of retaliation to that. PS allows artists to take scientific explanations and use them as revamped sources of inspiration. Using them, artists are able to create their own interpretations of natural phenomena in their own unique ways, just this time around, they have more to work with.”. An example of that – we were given a quote that read: “Newton had “destroyed the poetry of the rainbow by reducing it to a prism” – It’s still a rainbow, the only difference is that now people have more associations to work with when exploring rainbows creatively. And thing is, I may be completely wrong with how I comprehend the concept of Poetic Science, however, as a creative, I’m granted the power of interpretation which makes it valid enough to roll with!.. Hopefully..
My subject of choice is Nature and Nurture. I started by picking out a few points of interest such as emotional development, adaptation, evolution, aging/stages of life, but later had to conjoin them into a single topic in order to make it easier to comprehend and develop further. “Nature and Nurture” has a great ring to it and it potentially incorporates every single one of the points of interest that I had picked beforehand, it simply worked. I felt as though evolution and adaptation went hand-in-hand and stages of life and emotional development shared the same fate – it was only logical to narrow it down to what it is now. I decided to explore this subject through the medium of drag. I have been itching to give the art of drag a go for a few years now and for whatever reason, this project has really inspired me to go for it. Over the last 3 years, I have consumed a lot of drag related media and have actually considered of trying to get into it, before second year commenced, I said to a few people that I would definitely give it a shot the moment I saw an opening for an opportunity to do so. The brief was essentially a green light, something about it just screamed “GO. HAVE. FUN.” (it was most likely the fact it was so open to any imagineable approach) so here we are.
The way I want to go about executing these drag pieces is by creating 5 different looks that would represent a stage of a human’s life. Of course, to make it more intriguing, I have decided to make it more so anthropomorphic as opposed to having it be a homosapien, I plan to achieve that by incorporating elements of animals associated with the stage’s developmental progress, objects associated with the age group, the mental posture of it as well as other factors. The general intent is to showcase the “mental matamorphosis” of a human but in a way that a non-human bestiary author would showcase it based on a description given to them – a sort of callback to the Durer’s rhinoceros workshop we had in the beginning of first year! Well, kind of..
I managed to break down the life cycle of a human being into 5 stages (7 with birth and death) – them being: Infancy, Childhood, Adolescence, Adulthood, Elderhood. To fit my idea better, I changed the names of these stages to: Hatchling, Juvenile, Young Adult, Adult and Elder. I decided to eliminate the humanoid aspect from the creature as I felt as though it would give me more creative freedom, it allowed me to have a selection of bases to work off of.
With time, I ended up pondering about whether or not creating the “perfect being” was what I truly wanted to achieve, did I want to showcase my idea of peak human evolution? Or did I want to give speculative evolution a shot and try and imagine how humans might evolve in the future based on an ultimately hypothetical and probably impossible scenario. The great thing about speculative evolution is that there is really no indication as to which aspect enforces said evolution as it’s all very hypothetical. However, there is science to be found within it. Normally, the hardest part of it all would be deciding which aspect would I want to choose as my key reasoning for the evolutionary process being commenced in the first place, but I feel as though I have enough option to help simmer and even annihilate the stress associated with it.
The aspect that I consider to be key in my set of stages of evolution is mental development. It will affect how the creature looks and behaves, i.e. how a part of the body correlates with the stage that it is meant to represent, how its behaviour reflects the age that it hypothetically is. I have also paid a lot of attention to/dedicated a lot of time figuring out the transitional stages to make a cohesive and gradual development in each design, more on that in future posts though!