Intertwining volcanoes and society in Chile through arts and interdisciplinary connections

Valentina Acuña, Matías Clunes, Sebastián Riffo Valdebenito, John Browning


The conceptual distance between nature and society has been a concern within social sciences and interdisciplinary debates. We contribute to this discussion illustrating how arts have played an important role in demonstrating the entanglement of Earth and society through their ability to frame and shape the dynamics of the Earth across sensations. Through an examination of artistic representations in Chile, we seek to show how the proximity of Chilean society to the presence of volcanoes has been eloquently conveyed through various artistic styles across different historical epochs. Our study extends from the birth of the Chilean nation in 1818 to the year 2021, and examines a wide range of artistic representations, that encompass national symbols, image-making techniques, sculpture, art installations, poetry, music, and audiovisual works. Our research represents a pioneering effort to explore the diverse representations of volcanoes in Chile and has uncovered a remarkable diversity of artistic expressions that reflects the deep connection between Chilean society and volcanic processes and landscapes. Ever-present and often breathtaking, volcanoes have served as enduring symbols of national identity and as sources of inspiration for artists of diverse disciplines and aesthetic sensibilities. We illustrate how the arts reveal the relationship between volcanoes and social life and provide the basis for a detailed analysis that explores the temporal and spatial contexts in the representation of volcanoes and the human perception of geological phenomena in Chilean culture.


Volcanoes; Arts; Interdisciplinarity; Geology

How to cite this article Acuña, V.; Clunes, M.; Riffo Valdebenito, S.; Browning, J. 2024, Intertwining volcanoes and society in Chile through arts and interdisciplinary connections. Andean Geology 51 (2) : 271-295. [doi:]