PhD THESIS

For ongoing publications, click here. For PhD thesis, read on. Screen Shot 2014-12-28 at 13.52.24

Click to download Kai’s redacted PhD, The Physical and Poetic Processes of Running  (27MB).  Examining the physical and poetic processes of running, Kai proposes that we activate running as a playful toolkit to re-orientate the way we experience, think about and impact the city, our relationship with the authorities, the internet-mediated reality as well as the way we think. ‘Trans-running’ was the term Kai coined to describe this new running approach. The piece not only explores running as a subject matter but methodology and practice, and not just as an activity, verb but a metaphorconcept, noun. The writing style self-reflexively mobilises run-related puns and idioms throughout. Ideas are also worked through ideas by ‘running back-and-forth’ a diverse range of thoughts including digital aesthetics, Daoism (Taoism), running (its neuroscience, histories, biomechanics), travelogue, Situationism and so on. In its last incarnation, the thesis has about 100,000 words (including appendices) and 323 pages. The thesis will be completely renovated and transformed into a book, entitled RUN! RUN! RUN! 20 Ways Running Can Change your World.

Kai’s Fine Art PhD (2009-2013) was undertaken at the Slade School of Fine Art. It was funded by UCL (the Overseas Research Scholarship and the Graduate Research Scholarship) as well as National Arts Council of Singapore. This written work (70,000 words, 6 chapters) complemented Kai’s studio practice, which comprised of a large body of art works that ran the gamut of genres and medium including durational performance, film, performance-lecture, photography, GPS drawing, (social media) art and so on. Kai’s Supervisors were Professor Susan Collins (Director of Slade School of Fine Art), Dr Sharon Morris (Deputy Director and Head of Doctoral Research), as well as Mr Jon Thomson (Slade Reader; of Thomson & Craighead). Her examiners were Dr Alan Latham (Senior Lecturer, UCL Geography) and Dr Peter Ride (Westminster). Over the 4 years, Kai has shown/performed/talked about different versions of this research in 63 exhibitions/publications/presentations.

2013: Kai's fine-art practice-related thesis totalling about 100,000 words (including appendices) and 323 pages.

The following is a list of contents of the thesis. Each chapter ends not with a conclusion but ‘transition’.

Warming up: Introduction

  • About This Thesis
  • About This Introduction
  • Physical And Poetic
  • Playful And Pleasurable
  • Performative: Written Thesis
  • Performative: Artworks
  • Pertinent: Why Now?
  • Running As Thinking Process
  • This Practice-Related Fine Art Thesis
  • A Playful Discourse About A Playful Way
  • Transition. 

Chapter I. Theoretical Contexts

  • Introduction
  • Practice (My Documenta performance)
  • Reflection
  • Reflective-Practice (Schon, Kolb)
  • Thinking-On-Our-Feet (the Chinese character ‘dao’)
  • Poetic-Thinking (Lao Zi)
  • World-Body-World (Daoism/Taoism)
  • Living-Moving (Lao Zi, Pascal, Chatwin)
  • Running-Surviving (Bramble & Lieberman)
  • Daoism-Inspired Running (on the concept of wuwei)
  • Aesthetic-Order (Hall & Ames’ Correlative thinking)
  • Profitable-Exercise (Montaigne, Clarke)
  • Pungent-Words (the Lao Zi / Daodejing/Tao Te Ching)
  • Messy Swamp-High Dry Ground (Heinrich, Schipper, Liebenberg, Lieberman)
  • Thesis-As-Artwork (Hall & Ames)
  • Trial-&-Error (Thomson)
  • 10,000 Possible-Mappings (Hall & Ames)
  • Transition

Chapter II. Transform Your Real World

  • Introduction
  • A. Run Your City
  • Sport & Trans-sport
  • Speed-Play-Drift
  • Subverting Big Brother’s Gaze
  • Subverting the Tourist’s Gaze
  • Subverting the Gaze cast on the Other
  • Re-Reading Your City
  • Subverting the Male Gaze
  • B. Run Against Your State
  • Cutting Freely Across the Political Landscape
  • Transcending the State-Run Spectacle
  • Transcending the State-Run Spectacle, En Masse
  • Running Against the Political Status Quo
  • Running Against being Run By the State
  • The Trans-Running Body as Sight/Site of A Poetic Revolt
  • C. Be On The Run At Your World-At-Large
  • Fight, not Flight
  • Revolutionising Your World
  • Revolutionising Your World, Constantly
  • Trans-Running As A Self-Renewing Medium
  • Transition

Chapter III. Transform Your Digital World

  • Introduction
  • The Smart, Or Tyrannical, Stupid And Insane Digital World
  • Trans-Running As An ‘App’ For The Digital World:
  • A. Playing A ‘High-Tech-All-In-One-Smart-Digital-Compact-Body-Art-Trans-Runner-Fully-Equipped-With-Multiple-Apps’
  • B. Playing A ‘Well-Connected-Hyper-Linked-Hyper-Being’
  • C. Playing A ‘Dis-Located-Digital-Nomad’
  • D. Playing An ‘Inane-And-Insane-Master’
  • E. Playing A ‘Game-Art-With-No-Point’
  • Transition

Chapter IV. Transform Your World Of Thinking

  • Introduction
  • Picture Yourself As:
  • A. A Runner On A Runner’s High
  • B. A Daoist Adept In The Midst Of An Ecstatic Meditation-In-Motion
  • C. A Correlative Thinker
  • D. A Personification Of The Dao
  • E. An Active Participant In A Running-Discourse With Other People
  • F. A Running-Ambassador And ForerunnerTrans-Running As A Mode Of Thinking
  • Transition

Chapter V. My Messages To The Art World; Correlations And Findings

  • Introduction
  • My Messages Of Happiness, Freedom And Correlativity To The Art World:
  • Message 1: Free Yourself From Your Biases About Running And Embrace Running As An App For Your Thinking And Art-Making
  • Message 2: Free Yourself To Network With Your Past, Present And Future, And Shape Your Own Fate In Your Own Hands
  • Message 3: Free Yourself To Be Paradoxical
  • Message 4: Free Yourself To Embrace The Physical And Poetic, To Run After Ideas And Practices, and to Transform Them Into Something New
  • Message 5: Free Yourself To Freely Correlate, And To Become A Mega- And Meta-Metaphor
  • Message 6: Free Yourself To Join In The Celebration Of Human Togetherness And Resilience
  • Message 7: Free Yourself To Be Happy
  • Message 8: Free Yourself From The Notions Of Life and Death
  • Message 9: Free Yourself From Rules Set By The ‘Walking-Around’ World And Even By Yourself
  • Transition

Chapter VI. Warming Down: A Provisional Synthesis

  • Introduction
  • Conclusions And Potential Impact
  • Further Research: Kaidie’s Final Messages

Statistics (as of 2015 February 11) of downloads.

As of 2015 February 11, the thesis has been downloaded for 395 times from the UCL online depository.  It has been uploaded since May 2014, and seems particularly popular for scholars (or computer robots?) from USA.

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