Conference Agenda

RN02_08: Boundaries for Artists and Audiences
Thursday, 22/Aug/2019:
6:00pm - 7:30pm

Session Chair: Graciela Trajtenberg, The Academic College of Tel Aviv Yafo
Location: GM.306
Manchester Metropolitan University Building: Geoffrey Manton, Third Floor 4 Rosamond Street West Off Oxford Road


Theater 21 And Inclusive Art Center: Downtown – “Placeless Spaces” in Warsaw

Bogna Kietlińska

University of Warsaw, Poland

For the last 14 years, Theater 21 has gone a long way - from the school hall to the stages of repertory theaters and the space of many other cultural institutions. Due to the lack of its own place, it became a "flying institution", which is a nomadic organization that fulfills the role of a cultural institution, but without permanent financing and necessary infrastructure. Today we already know that Theater 21 needs another step, which is transforming into a full participant field of culture - with its own place and resources for long-term functioning. This is also due to the fact that Theater 21 aspirations to expand the field of social awareness about intellectual disability are increasingly transformed into social postulates and an element of inclusion policy, which seems to be invisible for city authorities. It’s a “non-physical” space, which engages people with disabilities in the artistic field in order to strengthen them as the full-fledged employees of the cultural sector. On the basis of 30 qualitative interviews (with creators of Theater 21 and representatives of institutions that have so far cooperated with this theater) and participant observation, I built a new model of cooperation that takes into account the existing barriers, but also emphasizes resources that have not always been noticed. This model is also a starting point of the institution called Inclusive Art Center: Downtown, which is planned to be a physical representation of socio-political processes concerning intellectual disabilities issues and inclusion policy.

Who (What) Is An Artist? Israeli Visual Artists' Status

Graciela Trajtenberg

The Academic College of Tel Aviv Yafo, Israel

The number of professional artists has grown over the past 30 years, and this process has not passed over Israel. Along with the growth in artist population, both sociologists and policy makers have increased their interest in these groups. Despite the fact that Israeli cultural sector is not an exemption, no in-depth study on these questions has been done so far. Our research project includes two stages, an online survey and in depth interviews.

The paper will present the first findings from the survey that has recently started circulating amongst Israeli visual artists. The methodology chosen to conduct the online survey was online, via internet-based questionnaire. The boundaries of the category "visual artists" were set following the accepted definition in the Israeli field of visual arts: painting, drawing, print, sculpture, etching, installation, mixed media, photography and video. In order to detect new definitions, the option "other" was included several times in the survey for respondents to describe their art. Before the survey could get underway it was necessary to compile the list of artists. The potential respondents contact information (email) was sourced on various websites of art institutions and schools in Israel.

The purposes of the survey are threefold: the first, systematically gathering data about age, gender, ethnic belonging, art studies, art studios and information in relation to artists’ employment and income. The second, mapping the stages of the professional artistic carrier and its social profile. Third, exploring artistic selfhood regarding local and international context.

“If You Show an Italian film, Serve Italian Wine”: (Re)constructing Authenticity Through Film-going Experience

Jan Hanzlik

Charles University, University of Economics in Prague

After 1989, film exhibition in Czechia have been affected by several major transformations that significantly changed the film-going experience. Post-1989 decline in film attendance has been gradually averted by the establishment of numerous multiplexes starting with 1996, reflecting the same development that took place in the West during the 1970s and 1980s (e.g., Gomery 1992; Acland 2003; Hanson 2007). An opposition towards multiplexes stemming from their association with shopping malls, Hollywood blockbusters, and popcorn paved the way for the establishment of art-house cinemas in larger cities that provide spectators with more highbrow offerings. Most recently, film exhibition has been characterized by what has been termed an eventization and festivalization of culture (see e.g., Bennett, Taylor and Woodward 2014): Regular film screenings are replaced by the rising number of film festivals of various kinds and unique one-off events that combine film-going experience with other social activities. This trend is apparent both in the operation of multiplexes (opening nights of blockbusters are marketed as global events) and art house cinemas (e.g., a screening of an Indian film is combined with a tasting of Indian food). The presented paper addresses this trend through an analysis of cinema programs, participant observation at film events, and interviews with film industry professionals. The trend is interpreted through theories that address the desire for and decreasing sense of authenticity and belonging in the globalizing world (e.g., MacCannell 1999; Zukin 2010).

Art Intelligentsia: On Acting and Power in a Contemporary Western Theatre

Tova Gamliel

Bar Ilan University, Israel

How should the point of view of artists in a current kulturkampf be understood? The lecture will probe how the Israeli mainstream theatre which is perceived as a liberal, critical and "leftist" actually became as a conservative space that does not uphold pluralist practices. This question will be viewed through the senior theatre actors as significant cultural agencies. By the interweaving of Bourdieu's habitus with Marvin Carlson's theory, I discuss how the theatre actors preserve their hegemonic status, which catches simultaneously liberal image with conservative and even racist elements.

An analysis of the Israeli theatre actors' habitus follows the historical tendency of this bourgeois theatre, including its creators and actors, in this profession toward “possession” or the "back-to-the past, and signifies this tendency as additional sources of “artistic capital”. This tendency establishes a close relationship between actors’ heroic biographies and artistic conventions in the Western theatre. The article connects this theatrical habitus to an ideological justification of the Zionist movement in Israel. Theoretically, the novelty of the analysis concerns to the historical element of Bourdieu’s concept of “habitus”. The argument is that the duplexity of this element in the "back-to-the past" habitus, is embodied in mythization's processes of the theatre's actors thereby it provides to the theatrical habitus a relative durability against social transformations.