Moving Ants on a Painted Tree

In our first talk of the series, anthropologist Christine Moderbacher presents the ongoing project “Moving Ants on a Painted Tree”, made in collaboration with the artist Iris Blauensteiner. Reflecting one of the central ideas of the ANTART Network, “Moving Ants on a Painted Tree” is a project that seeks to advance the dialog between art and anthropology through combining ethnographic field research and artistic tools of representation. However, in practice, the two researchers/artists also reached limitations and faced difficulties that often remain unspoken. Christine Moderbacher will discuss these challenges and unfold the at times different approaches, reflecting on how art and anthropology diverge and converge.

(The project “Moving Ants on a Painted Tree” is supported by Viertelfestival, Otto Mauer Fonds, Gemeinde Berg, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology Halle.)


Christine Moderbacher is an anthropologist and documentary filmmaker. Completing her PhD at the University of Aberdeen in 2019, she is currently working at the Max Planck Institute of Social Anthropology in Halle, Germany. Her documentary films are shown in international film festivals and received a number of prizes.


Iris Blauensteiner is an Austrian filmmaker and writer. Having studied Art and Digital Media at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna and film and media studies at the University of Vienna, she is currently writing on her second novel. Her fiction and documentary films are shown in international film festivals and received national and international awards.


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