Found an article that I had read in detail and summarised before I got back to this blog. Only relative in the negative but did help me sort out that empathy was not one of my keywords. Actually as I’m writing I see that the movement bit is relevant too.
Brinck, I 2018, ‘Empathy, engagement, entrainment: the interaction dynamics of aesthetic experience’, Cognitive Processing, vol 19, no. 2, pp. 201-213
The author discusses empathy as key to the aesthetic experience. By empathy he means the ability to see things from a perspective that is recognised as not your own, but instead exposing you to new content. The article also includes interesting discussion about how bodily engagement influences the aesthetic experience, by encouraging the viewer to sync his movement with the movement perceived in the artwork, and in this way experiencing the emotion relevant to that movement. I had thought that empathy was a keyword for my work, but after reading this article I realised that I am not attempting to evoke empathy, in that I am not looking to give the viewer a new emotional experience, but rather to recognise their own past experiences in my work. In this way I hope that relief can be elicited by the understanding that their experiences are not unique. I would, however, like the movement suggested by the work to be that of a hug, with its concomitant feeling of comfort and relief.
Just a reminder not related to the AB.. I am trying to portray the emotions but take away their power and replace it with relief.