Would you like to collaboratively explore connections between ethnographic, site-specific, arts-based, and pedagogical practices in a community of researchers, artists and educators, and on-site in Lesvos, Greece? The Encounters project and the Faculty of Fine Arts at the University of Agder (UiA), Norway, invite applications to attend the summer 2022 course Encounters - Between Arts, Ethnography and Pedagogy. This is an interdisciplinary master's (graduate) level course, and more details on the course curriculum can be found here.
The practical part of the course will take place in the Greek island of Lesbos from 31 July to 14 August 2022. The 'home base' will be the Metochi Study Centre, and we encourage student participants to collaboratively develop projects that may approach different sites, communities or networks from a starting point in the local community of Kalloni.
The course invites MA / Graduate level students from visual and performing arts, music, anthropology, sociology, education and related fields. Other applicants who meet the admission requirements (i.e. completed BA) will be considered.
The course intends to provide you with experience and training in undertaking innovative and critical research that approaches site-specificity from multiple angles, such as site-specific and social art practices, participatory or experimental ethnography, and critical pedagogy.
The course is held in English, but the instructors may also offer supervision in, respectively, Norwegian, Greek, Spanish, or Italian.
For further details, please see the formal course description, as well as the reflections under "Practical information" below.
Applicants must have completed a bachelor's (undergraduate) degree in a relevant field, such as visual and performing arts, music, anthropology, sociology, education / pedagogy, or related fields.
We wish to recruit highly motivated and self-driven students for this course, and the number of participants is limited. Applicants are required to include a letter of motivation with their application (see details below).
Please submit your application by 1 May. The application has the following steps;
In Lesvos, students will work in groups and also collaborate with their mentors to develop and carry out their explorative projects. The projects are encouraged to address and collaborate with local sites, institutions, people and narratives of the island, and the course will suggest local contacts as a starting point for the exploratory work.
Before and after the stay in Lesvos, there will be online course activities with presentations, supervision and assignments. Students will also share their evolving collective and individual work and reflections in a closed blog on the project website.
The exams are planned to take place as student presentations/exhibitions during Athens international ethnographic film festival 22–27 November 2022.
See course description for exam details. Travel support to Athens will be offered. Students who cannot make it to Athens in November will be offered a digital solution to present their work.
The students will pay a small tuition / semester registration fee to UiA (NoK 685, ca 72 Eur). Teaching, supervision, accommodation and meals on the course site in Lesvos will be provided for free for participating students. A limited support for travel to and from Lesvos may be offered. The students may also need to cover some local transportation costs in Lesvos, and expenses for own choice of artistic materials or documentation, depending on the nature of the projects that evolve.
Students make their own travel arrangements and arrive in Metochi in the afternoon / evening of Sunday 31 July, and depart Sunday 14 August before noon. The course leaders and Metochi can help organize taxis from / to the airport in Mytilene if requested.
Students and staff will stay at the Metochi study center, Kalloni. Most students will be accommodated in double rooms. Please see other practical information on Metochi’s website.
We imagine the two weeks in Lesvos as a period of fieldwork, encounters with local people, artistic production, mentoring, discussions, lectures and workshops, as the groups of students develop different types of site-related work that demonstrate the potentiality of the combined practices of art, research and pedagogy, while also dealing respectfully with the contexts that one encounters.
From the approach of artistic practice, we are considering Miwon Kwon’s (2002) categorisation of what ‘site’ may represent in site-specific art, from the phenomenological (such as places, buildings, landscapes, sounds), to the social and institutional (events, places to meet, social practice, performance) and the discursive (stories, media events, ideas). Hosting such a course in Lesvos will, we envision, open up for all these dimensions.
In recent years Lesvos has become a major transitional route for refugees coming to Europe and has mainly been represented in the media as linked to the refugee crisis, and is, as such, already saturated in images from the global media. In Encounters we aim to develop alternative approaches to representation, participation and outcome of ethnographic research, and to explore how these approaches may enable different ways of (re)presenting others, that is, enter new conversations about the site itself – through the everyday of people, institutions and places.
We encourage student research to be experimental also in terms of output and dissemination, such as producing films, podcasts, soundscapes, performative or artistic works, webpages, public scholarship or social action. We are also interested in how methodological encounters between the practices of art, ethnography and pedagogy can be used as a vehicle to present complex issues of representation to audiences outside the walls of academia.
The instructors in the course will include:
The course is part of the project Encounters – through arts, ethnography and pedagogy. This is an Erasmus+ strategic partnership between the universities of Agder (NO), The Aegean (GR), Amsterdam (NL) as well as Athens international ethnographic film festival – Ethnofest (GR), Raketa (SE) and Arts Cabinet (UK). See also project website.
1 May 2022
15 ECTS credits