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Subject:

THE DOMINANT THEME

From:

Atelier Etno <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Archaeological theory and associated fields of interest list <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 21:43:10 +0100

Content-Type:

multipart/mixed

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (68 lines) , EXPRESSION 19 .pdf (68 lines)

EXPRESSION 19 Enclosed


Dear friends and colleagues,
A forthcoming issue of EXPRESSION is being planned on “The dominant
theme in prehistoric and tribal art”, a topic that may stimulate some
of you to contribute a paper or a note.  As a guideline please find
enclosed a complimentary copy of EXPRESSION 19, the present issue of
this quarterly journal in Conceptual Anthropology.
Each assemblage of prehistoric and tribal art has a dominant theme.
Some ethnic groups focus their visual art on anthropomorphic figures,
others on animals, or even on a specific animal, and others again on
signs, symbols or ideograms. Well-known concentrations of prehistoric
art display millenary sequences of different phases showing changes in
the dominant theme from one period to another. In regions like
Gobustan (Azerbaijan), Arnhem Land (Northern Australia) or the Kondoa
District (Tanzania), stratigraphic successions of rock art phases show
flat changes in the dominant theme, from one phase to the other. What
is the meaning and function of the dominant theme? Whatever the case,
totemic, magic, economic or else, it reflects the concern of the
artist.
Visual art is a mirror of the mind and soul of the artist; it is the
expression of his/her concerns. Visual art follows common grammatical
and syntactic rules, as elaborated in a  monographic study (World Rock
Art, Atelier edit, 2015). The dominant theme is one of the factors
defining the identity of patterns. It turns up to be a diagnostic
element to define the conceptual, economic and social structure of the
artist’s society. It also awakens new indications on the issue of the
“dominant concern”, which is a recurring social and conceptual pattern
in every culture and every period. A practical example, regarding the
rock art of Tanzania, is presented in issue 18 of EXPRESSION quarterly
journal.
Dominant themes are present also in urban societies. The dominant
theme will not be the same in the frescoes of a Christian church and
in those of a Buddhist temple, though in both cases the dominant theme
will be that of anthropomorphic images. The ideograms associated to
the pictograms will clarify the different identities. In the cases of
hunters-gatherers, the dominant theme will not be the same in the
paintings of bison hunters and in those of snail eaters and
collectors.
A forthcoming issue of EXPRESSION quarterly journal will focus on this
topic: the dominant theme. What makes different cultures have
different dominant themes in their visual art? Colleagues and friend
are invited to elaborate this topic, either on specific cases or on
general or comparative issues. The study of cases may help clarifying
the cognitive system behind the choice of the dominant themes. A step
further will be made in understanding the mind of the art-makers in
different societies. Colleagues and friends having something to say
are welcome to share their knowledge and ideas in this joint effort to
go one step further.
If you wish to share your ideas, please let us have the title and a
short abstract of your proposed paper as soon as possible to
<[log in to unmask]>.  The deadline for the presentation of papers
is the 20th of May 2018,
We look forward to hearing from you.
Cordial regards,
Emmanuel Anati


Prof. Emmanuel Anati
President, Atelier Research Center for Conceptual Anthropology
Director, CISPE, Centro Internazionale di Studi Preistorici ed Etnologici
President, UISPP-CISENP, International Commission
Professor of Paleo-ethnology, (Ret) University of Lecce
Honorary President, Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici
email <[log in to unmask]>

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