chapter  9
15 Pages

When ethnographies enter art galleries


In this chapter I explore expressions of embodied and emotional knowledge and aesthetic responses in the audiences of three exhibits in university and community art galleries of Following the Trails of Urban Miracle Seekers, an ethnographic-based art project. is interdisciplinary art project was created using my skills as a visual artist and as an ethnographer. To understand the relationships created during the exhibits between audiences and ethnographic-based artworks, I examine the process of creating the art object from its origin in the ethnographic eld, to its making in the art studio, and nally to its display in the exhibiting space. I found that while the exhibiting space and its display, play an important role in shaping responses from the audiences, the images themselves contain forms of knowledge and sensations that have been created in the ethnographic site and in the studio which are transmitted to the viewers during the exhibits and often without the intention of the artist. is is particularly the case when the images are based on collective suering or trauma, which tend to emotionally aect viewers.