The artist as anthropologist

Robertson, K 2012, The artist as anthropologist, Masters by Research, Art, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title The artist as anthropologist
Author(s) Robertson, K
Year 2012
Abstract This research project explores the role of the artist as anthropologist and reflects the connection between rituals and earth-based community activities. The outcome of this project is be a series of photographic images that document how these communities experience a spiritual collective consciousness through group participation within selected activities.

Earth-based communities display faith and reliance on nature, and are located within the natural environment. For this project, I specifically focus on visiting and engaging with the earth-based community ConFest. Within these communities, member participants often express the term ‘spiritual’ in relation to group activities or rituals, as experiencing an intangible, yet higher sense of purpose in life. Moreover, these spiritual feelings are often expressed as a shared belief that provides a unifying force for the community, a ‘collective consciousness’.

This project investigates the potential for the artist to form a model of an anthropologist, as someone who studies the origin, the behaviour, and the physical, social, and cultural conditions of humans. Specifically, anthropological methods of engagement and documentation will be utilised to conduct interviews, take photographs, and to collect artifacts from individuals within these communities. These artifacts will serve as souvenirs of an anthropologist’s exploration. The artifacts will investigate and question the historical representation of artifacts outside of their original context or environment.
Degree Masters by Research
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Art
Keyword(s) Anthropology
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Created: Thu, 23 May 2013, 15:04:56 EST by Brett Fenton
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