ISSN: 17435234
First published in 2005
3 issues per volume
Volume 8 Issue 3
Cover Date: October 2012
Floats, friendship and fun: Exploring motivations for community art engagement
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Authors:  Mary M Hoefferle 
DOI: 10.1386/eta.8.3.253_1

community art,motivation,parade floats,folk art

This article addresses parade floats as a form of community art and explores float builders’ artistic motivations and their interactions within the context of collaborative float building. Distilled from the author’s ethnographic study of three groups of folk artists who build Labor Day parade floats in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in the United States, and a material culture analysis of their parade entries, the research indicates that the float builders engaged in art making primarily to meet their social needs, which include motives regarding group solidarity and civic obligations. This examination expands our understanding of community art by elucidating how the presence of a public audience, maintaining local traditions and opportunities for friendly competition, play and social bonding motivate community art engagement.
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