Fantasiology: the study of imagination, imagery and creativity

Reference & EducationCollege & University

  • Author Hellen Melpton
  • Published October 26, 2021
  • Word count 523

THE PROJECT ERAMSUS+ MET THE FANTASIOLOGIST

Massimo Gerardo Carrese is a fantasiologist: a scholar of imagination, imagery and creativity. Last week In Ercolano (Naples) he had an International workshop on Fantasiology for students of the Erasmus+ project.

If you ask him about his work you could probably be a little puzzled by the answer: “I’m a fantasiologist”. Massimo Gerardo Carrese is an Italian scholar, born in 1978 in Switzerland where he lived for a while before deciding to move to South Italy, near Naples. He has been working on fantasiology since 2001and his job for instance is quoted into the important Italian Encyclopedia “Treccani” and recently in an International RAI documentary. Massimo Gerardo Carrese loves to affirm that fantasiology is done with bibliographic references and field research, that is, looking for those who have written before him on these topics, from Plato to Simon Baron-Cohen, from Democritus to Bruno Munari. But what is fantasiology and what’s the job of a fantasiologist? “Fantasiology is a critical and analytical study about the scientific, humanistic, playful and artistic aspects of imagination, imagery and creativity, says Carrese, and the fantasiologist is the scholar who studies this discipline. The word fantasiology comes from ancient greek: the suffix –logy means ‘study’ and the prefix ‘phan/fan’ is linked with the meaning ‘to show, to demonstrate, to appear, to manifest’”. Fantasiology is not a word invented by Massimo Gerardo Carrese: as he writes on his website www.fantasiologo.com some of his researches revealed that this word is quoted for the first time in 1760 in a French book about the faculty of imagination but he gave the definition of this discipline after years of studies and comparisons with scholars, PHD and artists as in the Fantasiologic Festival where national and international scholars are invited to discuss and share opinions about imagination, imagery and creativity.

Last week Carrese held in Ercolano near Naples a workshop on fantasiology for students of the Erasmus+ Project coming from many European countries. They studied and analysed together with the fantasiologist the differences between imagination, imagery and creativity through a theoretical and practical workshop on how the mind works when we deal with imagination.

Over time Massimo Gerardo Carrese has given to FANTASIOLOGY an unprecedented methodological guise so that it could become an investigation tool to verify the complexities of thinking in relation to IMAGINATION, IMAGERY and CREATIVITY. Specifically, he identified the following key words to structure the interdisciplinary field of fantasiology: perception, association, imagination, fantasy, reverie, creativity, reality, deepened in his writings and meetings.

For Massimo Gerardo Carrese, fantasiology is the critical and analytical study of the scientific, humanistic, ludic and artistic aspects of imagination (the possible), imagery (mental images) and creativity (technique and originality). Imagination-imagery-creativity are the three essential words of fantasiology but to fully understand them it is necessary to study perception, association, daydream, reality.

He is a fantasiologic consultant and promotes meetings, lessons and training courses for adults and children on the national territory. To explore fantasiology, he writes essays and invents phantasiologic games (linguistic, mathematical, artistic).

To know more about Carrese’s job please visit his website www.fantasiologo.com

Massimo Gerardo Carrese is a fantasiologist and teaches fantasiology, the study of imagination, imagery and creativity

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