Rejectamenta : selected contemporary creators' use of rejectamenta: an exploration of contexts (location, selection and collation)

Powell, Emma (2009) Rejectamenta : selected contemporary creators' use of rejectamenta: an exploration of contexts (location, selection and collation). (PhD thesis), Kingston University, .


This research looks at the location, selection / rejection and collation habits of 108, creative practitioners. All use 'rejectamenta' - any discarded item with the potential for creative reuse. The previously little used term, 'rejectamenta’, was introduced to this group and their reaction to it was recorded. Data relating to the practitioners' rejectamenta habits was gathered via an on-line questionnaire located at “”. The questionnaire generated quantitative and qualitative data; selected aspects of which were applied to a diagrammatic Rejectamenta Audit Trail. The Rejectamenta Audit Trail plots the collection and use of rejectamenta. It is presented as one of the key aspects of the research and can now be tested with other rejectamenta users. Through the Rejectamenta Audit Trail a practitioner can gain revealing information about instinctive habits that are rarely analysed. Rejectamenta users can compare themselves to the Average Rejectamenta Audit Trail or to the Rejectamenta Audit Trail of individual respondents. Individual Respondent Profiles act as mini case studies covering questionnaire data and photographs of individual's rejectamenta collections and workspaces. The author has also pursued her own visual practice encompassing prints, artist's books, badges and collage. This has been placed in the public domain via websites, publications and exhibitions. The author's own behaviour was also mapped using the Rejectamenta Audit Trail. A hybrid, multi-method approach was used, allowing the practice-led and practice-based aspects to inform each other in an iterative and reflective process. The author's 10 visual diaries, discussed in Chapter 5, are a physical embodiment of this. Conclusions reflecting on the four research questions - the term rejectamenta and the sourcing, collation and use of rejectamenta - are drawn. The dialogue between the author and respondents, order from chaos, and 'collectors' are also discussed. Limitations and future possibilities for the research and practical work are also identified.

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