Ritualized art: cultural innovation and greening at festivals and protestivals

Illés, Z.S and Nita, M (2022) 'Ritualized art: cultural innovation and greening at festivals and protestivals.' In: Nita, M and Kidwell, J.H, eds. Festival cultures: mapping new fields in the arts and social sciences. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, pp. 115-140. ISBN 9783030883911

Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-88392-8_6


Our chapter proposes ritualized art as a theoretical concept that suspends the boundary between these categories, ritual and art, bringing to the fore the dynamic cultural processes behind artistic socially engaged practice. We argue that as a theoretical concept, ritualized art can help us examine the power dynamics between various key actants and assemblages: the artist; their raw, transformational materials—such as wood, smoke, fire, beeswax, oil, coal—celebrant; audience; the semiotics of the ritualized art space. Post-1960s developments in ritual and socially engaged art have natural points of convergence in artivism, yet art and religion have always had an entangled relationship, with artists often being the invisible curators of ritual space. Thus, we reframe art and ritual in relation to processes of cultural innovation and adaptation, and specifically the ‘greening’ of Christianity, as an example or type of acculturative process. To look more closely at cultural innovation, we zoom in and look at artistic engagement through the prism of Zsófia Szonja Illés’ socially engaged art at festivals that support innovative design processes. We propose that as a concept ritualized art can help us both re-evaluate past artistic and religious practice and, more importantly, understand trends in socially engaged art, green religion, and activism.

Item Type: Book Chapter or Section
Divisions: School of Writing, Publishing and the Humanities
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-88392-8_6
Date Deposited: 21 Jan 2022 21:16
Last Modified: 21 Jan 2022 21:16
URI / Page ID: https://researchspace.bathspa.ac.uk/id/eprint/14508
Request a change to this item or report an issue Request a change to this item or report an issue
Update item (repository staff only) Update item (repository staff only)