1200 Getty Center Drive
Los Angeles, California 90049

RSVP Required: 310-440-7300

Presenter: William A. Christian Jr., University of California, Berkeley

Spanish fiestas since the Counter-Reformation have tended to be of two types: the fiesta sagrada and the fiesta profana. The photographs of Cristina García Rodero suggest that in religious fiestas, communities explore humanity's relationship with the divine, while in secular fiestas they explore humanity's relationship with animals. Both explorations can involve not only ritual personal contact with the other—saint or animal—but also the assumption of the other's role and appearance, a kind of species transvestitism. García Rodero's photographs point to the similarity of these two explorations.

William A. Christian Jr., independent scholar and visiting professor of history at the University of California, Berkeley, draws on his recent study of García Rodero's fiesta photographs in the special collections of the Research Library at the Getty Research Institute to discuss these issues.

Related Event
Cristina García Rodero will perform at the Getty Center on Tuesday, March 13. Please see the event calendar for details and reservations.

This is part of the scholarly seminar series Five Thousand Years of Festivals
"A life without festivals is like a road without inns," said the ancient Greek philosopher Demokritos. Festivals still are the most spirited collective activities celebrated in any society. From ancient Mesopotamian rites to the annual Burning Man celebration held in Nevada, festivals have played a crucial role in societies. In them, communities ease social conventions and display power structures, gender roles, and religious ideals. Festivals seem so indispensable to the lives of communities that totalitarian regimes, such as those of the Soviet Communists and the German National Socialists, invested considerable energy in transforming religious rituals into staged civic festivals.

As part of the 2006–2007 research theme, "Religion and Ritual," and complementing the Festival Collection at the Research Library, the Getty Research Institute presents a series of scholarly seminars at the Getty Center and the Getty Villa that explore how festivals have been celebrated over many millennia.

Please note that seating is limited and programs are subject to change.

Procession of the vintners in Vevey, Switzerland, with grape-pickers, a wine press on a wagon, and Noah's Ark with the Dove of Renewal (detail), Christian Gottlieb Steinlen. Lithograph in Fête des vignerons, 1833
Research Library, The Getty Research Institute, 87-B10043

Seminars at the Getty Center
Russian Revolutionary Festivals (January 19, 2007)
Spanish Fiestas (March 2, 2007)

Seminars at the Getty Villa
Athenian Dramatic Festivals (March 30, 2007)
New Age Festivals (April 13, 2007)
Babylonian Festivals (May 11, 2007)
Zoroastrian Festivals (June 8, 2007)

Official Website: http://getty.edu/visit/events/festival_seminars.html#spanish

Added by kiracle on January 13, 2007

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