My master research took me to Robert Gardner as an example to how sensoriality can be used in ethnography as an alternate way of transmitting meaning.
An excerpt from my thesis that I apply here to Gardner:
The impact of such an immersive approach is analyzed by Walter Moser (2001, 35). Faced with the excess of aesthetic intensity, the Baroque spectator, reader, or listener is said by Moser to be enveloped in an emotional state of ecstasy or delirium well before being able to attribute to this intensity the sense of an attraction or repulsion. Murray (2008) takes the lead by adding that he would “add, moreover, that such a machinery of possession rekindles the early modern attraction to fantasy and fancy.”
Perniola adds that “The information society seems to propose a model of knowledge deriving not from the activity of a subject but from fancy and possession.” (2003, 86)
Reasoning within these frameworks, more than an analytical approach to its subject Robert Gardner fulfills the need and desire for emotional and sensorial experience in detriment of a deeper comprehension.
Another example that pushes sensoriality to a new level is the poem documentary Ashes and Snow, an exploration that took 10 years documenting the relation between humans and animals.
Ashes and Snow
Gregory Colbert – 2005
Below a small excerpt from the movie