Arts, Artistic Process and the Community

By Barbara Sellers-Young.

Published by The Arts Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This presentation borrows from the arts advocacy position of Ben Cameron and the embodied conceptualization of culture of Mark Johnson to argue that the arts provide an interdisciplinary approach that mediates between theory and practice in a constant state of examination of complex contemporary issues. Ultimately, this research approach participates in the discourses of contemporary arts practice involving issues of globalization, nationality, identity, subjectivity, etc. For although I agree with Richard Florida that the arts contribute to the creative economy, I do not believe their contribution is only economic. Instead, I believe the arts are a pivotal site of discourse regarding contemporary issues as they provide a process of examining these issues which unites our expressive potential with our analytic facility. This unification of emotion and cognition provides an opportunity for an audience to deeply reflect on the complexity of the issue as presented in the narrative of a film, dance or theatre production, the visual image, the space/time dimension of music, and/or the interactive and immersive environments of the media.

Keywords: Arts Practice, Mark Johnson, Ben Cameron

International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 6, Issue 2, pp.65-74. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 628.509KB).

Dr. Barbara Sellers-Young

Dean, Faculty of Fine Arts, York University, Vaughan, Ontario, Canada

Barbara Sellers-Young is an interdisciplinary scholar in the fields of dance, theatre and performance. Her interest in all forms of art and diverse performance styles informs her research on the moving body and globalization, which has taken her to Sudan, Egypt, Nepal, Japan, China, England and Australia. Professor Sellers-Young’s publications include Teaching Personality with Gracefulness and Breathing, Movement, Exploration. She is the co-editor of Bellydance: Orientalism, Transnationalism and Harem Fantasy which traces the impact of bellydancing from its initial introduction to the west through the writings of Flaubert to its popularity in the 1970s and 1980s in the wake of the feminist movement, and finally the globalization of the form in the 21st century. Her research has been supported by fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies and the Centre for Cultural Research into Risk at the Charles Sturt University in Australia as well as a Social Science and Humanities Research Council.

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