Ephemeral Art

  • Mireia López-BertranEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-51726-1_2825-1

Introduction

The archaeology of art is a term that includes a wide range of artworks. One of the most challenging is ephemeral art. This term hides a complex reality that encompasses different understandings of art: from body painting to temporary housing or furniture created for special occasions such as pilgrimages or coronation ceremonies. In fact, studying ephemeral art from an archaeological point of view seems contradictory because something ephemeral does not leave material traces. However, material culture gives us some clues to understand the presence of the ephemeral in artworks. The following sections address how archaeologists can investigate this type of art not only through ethnoarchaeological case-studies but also through the material culture left behind in the production of ephemeral art.

Definition

From an archaeological point of view, ephemeral art deals with temporary artworks and performances that have archaeologically low visibility. However, they can be...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References

  1. Day, J. 2013. Imagined Aromas and Artificial Flowers in Minoan Society. In Making senses of the past. Toward a sensory archaeology, Centre for archaeological investigation, occasional paper, ed. J. Day, vol. 40, 286–309. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Díaz-Andreu, M., and T. Mattioli. 2017. Rock art, music, and acoustics: A global overview. In The Oxford handbook of the archaeology and anthropology of rock art. Oxford handbooks online, ed. B. David and I.J. McNiven.  https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190607357.013.8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Farbstein, R. 2013. Making art, making society: The social significance of small-scale innovations and experimentation in Palaeolithic portable art. World Art 3 (1): 23–39.  https://doi.org/10.1080/21500894.2013.773935.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Fiore, D. 2005. Social images through visual images: the use of drawings and photographs in the Western representation of the aborigines of Tierra del Fuego (southern South America), Public Archaeology, 4:2–3, 169–182.  https://doi.org/10.1179/pua.2005.4.2-3.169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. García Benito, C., and R. Jiménez Pasalodos. 2011. La música enterrada: historiografía y metodología de la arqueología musical. Cuadernos de Etnomusicología 1: 80–08.Google Scholar
  6. Garfinkel, Y. 2003. Dance at the dawn of agriculture. Austin: Texas University Press.Google Scholar
  7. Hornbostel, E., and C. Sachs. 1961. Classification of musical instruments. The Galpin Society Journal 14: 3–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Inomata, T., and L.S. Coben. 2006. Overture. In Archaeology of performance: Theaters of power, community, and politics, ed. T. Inomata and L.S. Coben, 9–44. Lanham: Altamira Press.Google Scholar
  9. Knight, D.J. 2013. The Archaeoacoustics of sixth-century Christian structure: San Vitale, Ravenna. In Music and ritual. Bridging material & living culture, Publications of the ICTM study group on music archaeology, ed. R. Jiménez, R. Till, and M. Howell, vol. 1, 133–146. Berlin: Ekho Verlag.Google Scholar
  10. Köpp-Junk, H. 2018. Textual, Iconographical, and Archaeological Evidence for the Performance of Ancient Egyptian Music. In The study of musical performance in antiquity. Archaeology and written sources, ed. A. Garcia-Ventura, C. Tavolieri, and L. Verderame, 93–120. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.Google Scholar
  11. Küchler, S. 1988. Malanggan: Objects, sacrifice and the production of memory. American Ethnologist 15 (4): 625–637.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Lund, C. 1981. The archaeomusicology of Scandinavia. World Archaeology 12 (3): 246–265.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Manaud, O., and C. Barrandon. 2015. “Echo-graphie” intérieure du cairn de Gavrinis. Etude exploratoire des caractéristiques acoustiques et lecture symbolique. Archéothéma 39. http://lespierresquichantent.over-blog.com/2014/10/echo-graphie-du-cairn-degavrinis.html.
  14. Mazo Pérez, C., C. García Benito, and M. Alcolea Gracia. 2015. Un caso de Arqueología Experimental aplicado a la Arqueología Musical. SALDVIE 15: 65–91.Google Scholar
  15. Morley, I. 2006. Mousterian musicianship? The case of the middle Palaeolithic Divjebabe I bone. Oxford Journal of Archaeology 25: 317–333.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Morley, I. 2013. The prehistory of music. Human evolution, archaeology, and the origins of musicality. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Morphy, H. 2009. Art as a mode of action. Some problems with Gell’s Art and Agency. Journal of Material Culture 14 (1): 5–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Rees, J.A. 2013. Membrane drums as cosmic symbols and shamanic portals in the Shell art of Spiro, a Mississipian mound site in Oklahoma. In Music and ritual. bridging material & living culture, Publications of the ICTM study group on music archaeology, ed. R. Jiménez, R. Till, and M. Howell, vol. 1, 189–208. Berlin: Ekho Verlag.Google Scholar
  19. Reznikoff, I., and M. Dauvois. 1988. La dimension sonore des grottes ornées. Bulletin de la Société Préhistorique Française 85 (8): 238–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Robb, J., and O.J.T. Harris. 2013. Body worlds and their history: Some working concepts. In The body in history. Europe from the Palaeolithic to the future, ed. J. Robb and O.J.T. Harris, 7–31. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  21. Rosso, D.E., F. d’Errico, and A. Queffelec. 2017. Patterns of change and continuity in ochre use during the late middle stone age of the horn of Africa: The Porc-epic cave record. PLoS One 12 (5): e0177298.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0177298.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Soar, K., and C. Aamodt. 2014. Introduction. In Archaeological approaches to dance performance, BAR international series, ed. K. Soar and C. Aamodt, vol. 2622, 3–15. Oxford: Archeopress.Google Scholar
  23. Vázquez de Ágredos Pascual, M.L., C. Vidal Lorenzo, and P. Horcajada Campos. 2018. Face painting among the classic Maya elites: An iconographic study. In Social skins of the head body beliefs and ritual in ancient mesoamerica and the andes, ed. V. Tiesler and M.C. Lozada, 93–108. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press.Google Scholar
  24. Waller, S.J. 1993. Sound reflection as an explanation for the content and context of rock art. Rock Art Research 10 (2): 105–113.Google Scholar
  25. White, C.L. 2013. The burning man festival and the archaeology of ephemeral and temporary gatherings. In The Oxford handbook of the archaeology of the contemporary world, ed. P. Graves-Brown and R. Harrison, 596–609. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  26. Wright, D., B. Stephenson, P.S.C. Taçon, R.N. Williams, A. Fogel, S. Sutton, S. Ulm, and the Goemulgal of Mabuyag. 2016. Exploring ceremony: The archaeology of a Men’s meeting house (‘Kod’) on Mabuyag, Western Torres Strait. Cambridge Archaeological Journal 26 (4): 721–740.  https://doi.org/10.1017/S0959774316000445.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Zuchowska, M. 2014. Dancer’s representation and the function of dance in Han dynasty (202 BC-220 AD) Chinese society. In Archaeological approaches to dance performance, BAR international series, ed. K. Soar and C. Aamodt, vol. 2622, 67–73. Oxford: Archeopress.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departament d’Història de l’Art. Facultat de Geografia i HistóriaUniversitat de ValènciaValenciaSpain

Section editors and affiliations

  • Inés Domingo Sanz
    • 1
  • Danae Fiore
    • 2
  1. 1.Departament de Prehistòria, Història Antiga i ArqueologiaICREA/Universitat de Barcelona/SERPBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2."CONICET - AIA - UBA Asociación de Investigaciones Antropológicas"Buenos AiresArgentina