Art Opens Our Minds : Experience the Earth Within

Janelle Sochet
Exhibition and Experience Design

About this Item

Art Opens Our Minds : Experience the Earth Within
Contributor Names
Sochet, Janelle (Author)
Cowan, Brenda (Thesis advisor)
Fashion Institute of Technology, State University of New York. Exhibition and Experience Design (Degree granting institution)
Degree Information
M.A. Fashion Institute of Technology, State University of New York 2023
Department: Exhibition and Experience Design
Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 85-08
Includes supplementary digital materials
Advisor: Brenda Cowan
Committee members: Christina Ferwerda; Christina Lyons; Brooke Carlson
This exhibition will explore the complexities between humans and nature, uncovering the anatomical and emotional connections we share. There are rich similarities apparent from the mycelium network of fungal roots and the neurological networks within our bodies, each orchestrating a communication system for the organism to thrive in their environments. For instance, the mycelial energy centers referred to as "mother trees'; are older trees of the forest ground that have created the foundation of the rooted networks. Therefore, the mother tree can sense when there is a weakening within the rooted connection between younger trees of the forest to send nutrients through the mycelial to aid the ill trees back to health. The human body functions in a similar format, for instance, reaction to making contact with a hot surface, reflexes kick in, and the hand is pulled away or if a disease enters the body the immune system cell soldiers will fight against the foreign bacteria. These systems are significant to the function of life itself and align the thought that humans and nature act in synchronicity.
To ground is to align your mind, body and soul. This can be accomplished in many ways depending on the preference of the individual's connection to their sense of self and environment. Although, a universally sound rule of grounding is breath-work. Our breath taps into every part of our being and connects us to our surroundings, providing confidence in the present. Before we continue, pause and take a breath. And not the typical implicit breath, but an intentional full belly breath, in and out. This is an opportunity to root into the now and clear your mind. Through the art of breath, spaces optimal for grounding can be integrated into designed environments to elevate experiences of visitor engagement.
The Earth Within will combine the facets of expressive arts therapy, cymatics, and somatic breath all woven into the core value of grounding. These researched topics will be explored as methods to elevate the visitor experience through empathic design principles. In relation to the core of my thesis, my goal is to express the profound connection between human existence and nature which surrounds us. As we have drifted into modernized ways of life, with technology at the forefront of all communication, as I am using an electronic device to express myself at this moment, it is essential to reinforce that the essence of spirit resides not in the technology, but in the being using the instrument. These methods described above, expressive arts, cymatics, breathing, are all tools, electric or not, to connect with the human spirit and explain why it is that we have this innate connection to nature. With this information, join me on this journey to explore the Earth Within and how Art Opens Our Minds.
Keywords: Biophilia, Breath, Cymatics, Experience design, Expressive arts therapy, Grounding
Environmental health
Cognitive psychology
Arts--Therapeutic use
Grounding (Philosophy)
In Copyright
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FIT Repository ID: etd_000959
pqdiss: 30988366
URN/ISBN: 9798381448887
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Also available from ProQuest
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Sochet, J. (2023). Art Opens Our Minds : Experience the Earth Within [Master's thesis, Fashion Institute of Technology, State University of New York]. FIT Institutional Repository.
Sochet, Janelle. Art Opens Our Minds : Experience the Earth Within. 2023. Fashion Institute of Technology, State University of New York, Master's thesis. FIT Digital Repository,
Sochet, Janelle. "Art Opens Our Minds : Experience the Earth Within." Master's thesis, Fashion Institute of Technology, State University of New York, 2023.