Art as Technique

“Looking at the laws of perception, we see that perception becomes habitual, it becomes automatic. All our habits for example retreat into the area of the unconsciously automatic. Visually we may see an object as though it were ‘enveloped in a sack’. We know what it is by its configuration, but we see only its silhouette. Habitualization devours our lives. If whole areas of our life go on unconsciously, such times are as if they had never been.

Art exists that one may recover the sensation of life; it exists to make one feel things, to make the stone stony. The purpose of art is to impart the sensation of things as they are perceived and not as they are known. The technique of art is to make objects “unfamiliar”, to make forms difficult, to increase the difficulty and length of perception because the process of perception is an aesthetic end in itself and must be prolonged. Art removes the object from automated perception by making the familiar seem strange; that is defamiliarisation.”

'Art as technique’ by Viktor Shklovsky 1916

Rad Cam drawings

Oxford Icons

Beauty Goodness Truth

Stripped Back


Art as Technique

Working Processes

Embracing the Foreboding


Doing something new

Drawing in Mvumi, Tanzania