PSi Lexicon



Intermediality can be understood as transcending the specific use of a medium. Medium is interpreted here as the material bearer of an art form. There is no one correct way to use a medium. Following Irina Rajewskis conceptualisation of the word, intermediality may serve foremost as an umbrella term for all phenomena that take place between media (46). One can find traces of different media. The theatre makes use of medium-specifics (UNCLEAR WHETHER THE AUTHOR IS USING MEDIUM-SPECIFICS AND MEDIA INTERCHANGEABLY), for example film, dance, or the visual arts. The media itself uses qualities of other media, as a good understanding of the media entails understanding its relationship to other media. This is done through a concern with intermediality (Gaudreault 14-15). Intermediality, therefore, designates all those configurations that cross the borders between media (Rajewski 46). There are some levels of hybridization where one does not have to distinguish between different medium-specific qualities. Hybridization means that one approaches the use of different media-specifics as being homogeneous. The different media-specifics on the other hand are heterogeneous. A music piece is entirely different than a photograph. There always will be people who will still distinguish different medium-specifics. Artists who do not distinguish can be called hybrid artists, according to Pascal Gielen and Camiel van Winkel. They should have the capacity to engage in both autonomous and applied art practices being a theatre maker and an art teacher at the same time. Important is that one should work with different artistic disciplines (Van Winkel 9-10). Also, the artists should not make a distinction between different art practices. This view on artistic practices is applicable to performance studies. Performance artists work with the concept of intermediality (and thereby hybridity), because they rarely make a distinction between the different media they use. On top of that, performance artists engage in both the autonomous and applied arts practices: they often work create a performance and engage in research that is specific to the field.


Rajewski, I. O., Intermediality