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 port city of Genoa is dominated by water. A complex system of subterranean torrents traverses the fabric of this north-western Italian capital, rendering its territory prone to severe floods and landslides. Yet these underground rivers represent a world in their own right – hidden ecosystems that run in parallel… Read more »

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Imagine leaving your home, your workshop or school to find the air of your hometown thickened into a dark fog emanating from underground. This is what occurred in the village of Trecate, northern Italy, when in 1994 a SARPOM oil well exploded, covering the town with crude oil for days…. Read more »

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The enormous Boathouse 4 of the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard has housed many stories. Built in 1939, it met the need for rapid rearmament prior to the start of World War II. Yet since the end of the war, the Portsmouth Dockyard was marked by a steep decline in employees resulting… Read more »

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