The Somatic Landscape of Urban Migrant Identities: Mapping Emotional Engagements of Site, Dance and Body in Raval, Barcelona, as Case Study

Hunter, V. and Pellitero, A. M. (2018) The Somatic Landscape of Urban Migrant Identities: Mapping Emotional Engagements of Site, Dance and Body in Raval, Barcelona, as Case Study. ATINER'S Conference Paper Series. ISSN 2241-2891

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The historical neighbourhood of Raval, in Barcelona comprises a multicultural
urban landscape. It contains a sense of both tangible and intangible identity
influenced by a high level of social mobility arising from migration, tourism and
urban gentrification processes. In April 2018 we led an exploratory workshop with
neighbourhood residents, our objective was to observe the multisensorial nature of
this urban landscape with locally-based participants who identified themselves as
„migrants‟ to the Raval area. Through an arts-based residency we explored bodysite
relations by drawing attention to the body, human movement in space and its
relation to and reflection of the urban landscape. Our methodology involved a
five-day movement workshop with 14 participants in site-based movement
experimentation through which we explored the redefinition of urban affects,
engagement, familiarity, and sense of belonging to space. We focused our
attention on the creation of landscape through our bodies, using site-specific
movement explorations in space and experimental cartographies. Through the
practice-led inquiry we generated artistic site-specific material that articulated the
social, mental and environmental registers of space (Guattari, 1989). We
considered the communicative role of the body as a non-verbal and nonrepresentative
language (Thrift, 2008; Anderson and Harrison, 2010). The
mapping of urban space through the body enabled us to understand the
participants‟ subjective engagement with space (feelings, emotions, rhythms,
movements, intensities, memories, wishes, visions) (Harvey, 2006). We explored
landscape as an active and predicative creation arising from subjective and vital
experience, conscious, cognitive and sensorially filtered and shaped by memories,
emotions, narratives and perceptions. Through “co-mapping” bodies and urban
sites we explored the intra-active nature of these engagements through New
Materialist lenses (Barad, 2003; Haraway, 2016), spatial theory (Lefebvre,
1992/2004) and discourses of urban flow and mobility (Edensor, 2010; Cresswell
and Merriman, 2011; Harvey, 2012).

Publication Type: Articles
Additional Information: Atiner conference paper series No: ARC2018-2535 Printed in Athens, Greece by the Athens Institute for Education and Research. All rights reserved. Reproduction is allowed for non-commercial purposes if the source is fully acknowledged.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Community participation, Historical Urban Landscape, Landscape perception, Site-specific Dance Performance, Urban Mapping.
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
N Fine Arts > NA Architecture
N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
Divisions: Academic Areas > Department of Dance
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Vicky Hunter
Date Deposited: 29 Mar 2019 10:28
Last Modified: 29 Mar 2019 10:28

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