Magicians. And bad Arrested Development references.

Or perhaps just magicians. As a tribe that is. I have decided to focus my research on the magic community (that is magic as a performance art, not the occult). I am looking at a relatively small community – or maybe even a collection of separate communities – that form a subculture of sorts.

Despite the fact that magic is technically generally seen as a hobby or even a profession, the practitioners function within a fairly small, closed-off community which very closely guards its secrets. The element of pride and passion is palpable with any magician you meet, an emotional connection exist with the rest of the community through the shared passion for the art form. Many semiotic elements are also clearly visible, with a recognisable aesthetic associated with the subculture – this ranges from card motifs to ill-fitting suits and distracting movements. It’s not particularly difficult to look like a magician if you so choose.

An interesting angle to see the magic society from is the less positive aspects of a tribe. Namely the sense of elitism that comes with belonging to an enclosed, secretive subculture. Membership in the Magic Circle also brings with it a sense of prestige that many magicians bank on. I am hoping to talk to magicians that work within the Circle as well as those outside of it and ask about their experience with the larger community.

This also means that the game collaboration with Adam is going to focus on aspects of the magician subculture. More on that later.