Microtopia in Counterpoint: Relational Aesthetics and the Echo Project




Boudreault-Fournier, Alexandrine

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Cadernos de Arte e Antropologia


This article takes as its starting point the ethnographic experience of producing and editing a series of video clips that virtually unite musicians who have never met and who live in different places; it engages with the experience of producing an illusion, a virtual encounter, and a relational piece. The Echo project and its associated installation, “Echo ~ the first tie”, were created with the aim of exploring the concept of “microtopias in the present” as developed by Nicolas Bourriaud (2001). In creating “microtopias”, or spaces of exchanges and conviviality, the project questions the nature of the anthropologist’s involvement in the field as well as her relationship with the people she works with. This article discusses the nature of the relations provoked by an anthropologist during the production of a project that aimed to create a virtual space of encounter. More specifically, in this case, it looks at the meaning of an improvised musical performance in counterpoint. Finally, this article critically examines the Echo project in order to deeply reflect on what could constitute a relational aesthetics-based audio-visual ethnography.



relational aesthetics, video, microtopias, montage, music, Cuba


Boudreault-Fournier, Alexandrine (2016). Microtopia in Counterpoint: Relational Aesthetics and the Echo Project. Cadernos de Arte e Antropologia, 5(1), 135-154. Retrieved from https://cadernosaa.revues.org/1060