Wednesday, 20 January 2016

heathenry or self-identification

The ever brilliant Dangerous Minds gives us a gentle but dazzling reminder that in between these cross-quarter days and geographically too we are in the midst of the perennial animistic cycle of death and rebirth in this gallery of photographs by ethnographer Charles Fréger, who trekked across Europe in search of the archetypal Wild Mann. The author is hesitant to put too fine a point on it, as well, so I am reluctant to be pedantic either but dressing up and the associated rituals (and though perhaps not to vouchsafe a bountiful harvest or secure favour from the elder gods) seems suspended somewhere between cosplay and national garb. Rather than being disdainful, I think that there is surely something in the ceremony and associates that transcends fandom or avid re-enactors. What do you think? Are we guilty of chauvinism to dismiss partakers as engaging in a weekend hobby? Be sure to check out the entire gallery of bizarre and transformative regalia.