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The Wedding Dress, a Contemporary Knit: a Community Art Inquiry Into the Wedding Dress as a Cultural Symbol in Contemporary Quebec

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The Wedding Dress, a Contemporary Knit: a Community Art Inquiry Into the Wedding Dress as a Cultural Symbol in Contemporary Quebec

Gaudet, Marilene (2011) The Wedding Dress, a Contemporary Knit: a Community Art Inquiry Into the Wedding Dress as a Cultural Symbol in Contemporary Quebec. [Graduate Projects (Non-thesis)] (Unpublished)

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Abstract

In this art-based inquiry, as an artist, art therapist and research facilitator, I engaged nine participants in a community art project to open a dialogue around the wedding dress and its symbolic meaning in contemporary Quebecois culture. Within a feminist framework, this study examined the plurality of perspectives and the collective construction of meaning by inviting Québécoises to a weekly knitting circle over a period of four months. Together we created a wedding dress and installed it as wearable art at a local gallery. We used knitting to explore personal significance the wedding dress holds for each of us through guided conversations, questionnaires and collaborative art making. Participants were encouraged to share personal stories and debate issues pertaining to marriage, family life and the wedding dress. The main themes and values expressed by the group members were commitment and long-lasting love, respect, fidelity, equality and financial independence. We also talked about the multiple roles we play in our daily life and the importance of finding balance between our personal life and our career. The small number of participants places a limitation on the generalizability of the findings, but from all the dialogues this topic has sparked, I think it is fair to conclude that although more and more Québécois choose to live within a common law or civil union rather than get married, the wedding dress retains a powerful symbolic value in this culture’s collective unconscious.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Creative Arts Therapies
Item Type:Graduate Projects (Non-thesis)
Authors:Gaudet, Marilene
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Creative Arts Therapies (Art Therapy Option)
Date:April 2011
Thesis Supervisor(s):Silverman, Yehudit
Keywords:art-based, marriage, wedding dress, knitting, art therapy, Quebec, fiber arts, community art
ID Code:7215
Deposited By: MARILENE GAUDET
Deposited On:19 Jan 2016 18:12
Last Modified:05 Feb 2019 22:15
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