About Anima Loci

Anima Loci is a visual culture journal focused on an interdisciplinary exploration of the relationship between images and the places they inhabit.

The journal hosts short articles and photoessays by academics and practitioners from a variety of disciplines.

Concept

As anthropologist Keith Basso wrote, we are, in a sense, the place-worlds we imagine.1

The way in which a place is perceived, remembered and interpreted, either individually or socially, represents a mental and emotional landscape that can inform and affect personal and collective historical knowledge, behaviour and identity.

This process of ‘place-making’ is often mediated by images, that act as elicitors for perception and memory. Images are here intended both as physical as well as mental phenomena: a face in a rock, holy icons, new or forgotten architecture, intentional or accidental monuments, to name some examples. Images can also refer to those that have come to represent transforming areas or neighbourhoods. They can refer to spaces that, through the echoes of historic events, have crystallised into images within the social imaginary. Images are therefore understood not simply as artefacts in the external world, but as vital processes that occupy our bodies as their ‘living medium’.2

Anima Loci explores the potential of images that lie in this intermediary zone and the multifaceted ways in which they affect the perception of a place by providing ground for the workings of personal or collective memory, meaning and imagination.

Fields of Interest

Visual Anthropology, Art History, Architecture, Visual Culture, Aesthetics, Urban Archaeology, Research Architecture, Cultural Studies, Sociology, Ethnography, Philosophy, History, Photography, Art Writing, Critical Geography, Psychogeography. 

 


Footnotes

[1] Basso, Keith. H. (1996). Wisdom Sits in Places. Landscapes and Language among the Western Apache. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. p.7

[2] Belting, Hans. (2014). An Anthropology of Images. Picture, Medium, Body. Princeton NJ & Oxford: Princeton University Press. p.5


Recent articles

The Italian city of Rimini is not only a renowned seaside resort on the Adriatic Sea. It is also the home of a giant: a sixty-year-old skyscraper that stands out, completely alone, against an expanse of small houses. In this contribution, Marco Bertozzi reflects on the making of his film Skyscraper… Read more »

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In Letchworth Garden City, not much has changed in the last decades. In a time when the pandemic forced the nation to stand still, the author, John Vincent, reflects upon his own past and present embedded into this almost immutable backdrop. Through the lens of the camera, a short tour of what was once… Read more »

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The city of London appears as one of the marvels featured in Wonderful Things, an English 1852 publication collecting the “the most remarkable Wonders of the Ancient and Modern World”. Created by journalist and chartist Robert Kemp Philp, the piece is a curated text which combines the author’s reflections with… Read more »

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