Unhappy holidays? “Christmas Spirit” and the “gift of grief”.

Does Christmas make you sad? And will a gallery/museum near you be lucky enough to give you the “gift of grief”? While hoping everyone are enjoying happy holidays I just want to recommend a Christmas related and wonderful work of art that I got to see a preview of at the NMNH.

As part of the Recovering Voices seminar series, Australian anthropologist Jennifer Deger, presented (Sept 21, 2011) the video installation “Christmas Birrimbirr” (Christmas Spirit) and a powerful Christmas ritual in a Yolngu community in North Australia.

When Christmas approaches the people in Gapuwiyak start remembering their dear ones they have lost and get together to cry and grieve them, while at the same time decorating the village in Christmas colors and listening to songs like “All I Want for Christmas Is You”.

As a co-operation between two Yolngu directors, an anthropologist (Deger) and a video artist this ritual has been wrapped as a three screen video installation for museums and galleries where outsiders can take part in what they call the “gift of grief”.

And even though being a complete outsider to Yolngu culture and only seeing a preview of the work I really felt it was a gift. It reminded me that grieving can be good, as a step in a process of moving on and as a contrast making one more grateful for the good things in life.

So I hope this art work will make its way to a museum/gallery near you, and meanwhile you can read a review on this blog.

 

Advertisements

About olaugirene

antropolog med forunderlig kjærlighet for museumsstøv
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s