Paluí is an invented word that was born in music. Title of a song and the CD where it is compiled, has no definite meaning. Perhaps because of this ambiguity, Paluí elicited imaginative experiences from various universes of people, including the authors themselves, becoming matter and a way of studying thematic objects that embrace diverse disciplinary areas, in addition to Music, such as Design, Video , Visual Arts, Theater and Dance. The conception, direction and guidance of the different projects germinated in Paluí have been carried out by teachers and researchers from the Department of Communication and Art (DeCA) of the University of Aveiro (UA), from the Institute of Ethnomusicology – Center for Studies in Music and Dance ( INET-md), in collaboration with the Center for the Study of Sociology and Musical Aesthetics (CESEM), and the Institute for Research in Design, Media and Culture (ID+).
The artistic and transdisciplinary nature is what characterizes the objects and research processes developed since the edition of Paluí (2013) as a musical work. As well as (co)creation and experimentation in an educational, collaborative and socially inclusive context, germinated from music or in intimate engagement with it, constitute its main purposes and universes of implementation. This is how artistic works carried out in different regions and communities of the country, implemented through an interinstitutional protocol with University of Aveiro, and which this site presents, should be interpreted and contemplated.
There are two study projects already implemented, the first of which, constituting the cradle of educational research developed since then and, thus, also on this same site:
  1. Se queres saber o que é o Paluí põe o teu dedo aqui!, materially consummated in the publication of the book Paluí: Viagem por histórias sonoras que a língua portuguesa conta (2017; 2019);
  2. Paluí, está aqui? Histórias sonoras para cantos interiores, which aimed at the collective construction of a show of music, drama, dance and image projection presented at the festival Ao Alcance de Todos, in 2019, at Casa da Música, Porto, edited entirely in Film-Concert (2020) and, serving pedagogical and investigative purposes, in another film, a Documentary (2020).


The first (2014-2018), in which about six hundred children and their teachers participated, involved the communities of Santa Maria da Feira (SMF) and Aveiro, specifically the nine school groups of the 1st and 2nd Cycles of Basic and Pre-school Education. Escolar and DeCA (UA), namely Degree and Master courses in Design and Music Teaching – respective students and teachers.


The second (2018-2019), connected different communities of Aveiro and Porto: Music and Design students and teachers from the UA, from the Escola Superior de Educação do Instituto Politécnico do Porto (IPP), an artist from Casa da Música (CdM), and, also, users and patients of Hospital de Magalhães Lemos do Porto (HML), its Psychosocial Rehabilitation Service (SRP).


Between and after both, a set of diverse experiences and initiatives were developed and presented in various places in the country, such as shows, exhibitions, presentations, show cases, or even educational projects born autonomously in educational institutions, such as the case of Paluí, The Musical, promoted by Music and Theater teachers from the Artistic Schools of the Lisbon Conservatory of Music, with whom collaborative processes and educational and artistic experiences were developed, with a view to the conception of a “Musical” germinated in the songs of Paluí. Created by the students of the Musical Initiation classes, it was presented in the auditorium of the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Lisbon (2018).presented in the auditorium of the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Lisbon (2018).


This “space” or gap between projects also includes participation in conferences, communications, debates and published articles that are expected to be published,, where it was possible to share and disseminate, including internationally, the results of the experiences lived and made possible by any of these studies.
Paluí’s objects and problematics of study are characterized, firstly, by his particular enamour with artistic creation and creativity, as well as, methodologically, with his alignment with the processes and purposes of what is called artistic research, research in artistic practices, or, still, practice based research in arts; also, with the social and inclusive purposes that define the philosophy of a large number of experiences in socially engaged artistic practices – or participatory practices in art – carried out in the world today, in different communities and human universes, including the educational and school. Given the complexity of the phenomena of study, namely their intersection with themes and problems whose approach, generally of a phenomenological nature, is beyond the artistic dimension, areas such as psychology, education and didactics, among others, constitute Paluí’s field of research, contributing to the extension and breadth of its content, subject matter, purposes and scientific corpus.
Its lines or areas of study are as follows:
  1. Creation and research in artistic and participatory practices;
  2. Creation, intervention and research in educational and didactic contexts of music;
  3. Research in music as an agent of social and emotional change.


The first two lines encompass study objectives contained in the two projects carried out, presented here; the third was developed only in the last one, Paluí está aqui? Histórias sonoras para cantos interiores, in this case relating to the perception of the stigma of mental illness.
The following are the generic objectives of each of the lines of research and that guide the conception, in its specificity, of the scopes and purposes of action of each of the projects carried out – or, which are yet to happen.


1 — Creation and research in artistic and participatory practices
  • Study music in its diversity, plasticity and stylistic and discursive complexity, looking at it in its close relationship with the times and places of culture, particularly contemporary societies, as well as with other dimensions of knowledge, with a view to developing, creating and experimenting with holistic possibilities, of artistic and transdisciplinary scope, aimed at specific audiences, contexts and situations, duly analyzed and studied;
  • To study, explore, create and experience experiences of an artistic nature and transdisciplinary scope, capable of driving and mobilizing different people and communities, namely teachers and students of the University of Aveiro and other available institutions/publics, in the construction of common cultural projects, significant from an expressive, emotional and aesthetic point of view, in a dynamic of collaborative, cooperative, creative and socially inclusive fruition and participation;
  • To involve music students and teachers of the Department of Communication and Art of the University of Aveiro in aesthetically and socially meaningful experiences, in close connection with reality and community, including beyond the formal and institutional space and in different contexts, with a view to developing and expanding their creative, expressive, performative and emotional skills, and thus their vision and concepts about music and how, through it, they can respond to different challenges posed by today’s society, namely those beyond the formal contexts of education and culture.


2 — Creation, intervention and research in educational and didactic contexts of music
  • Develop the curricula of Basic Education, Pre-School and Secondary Education through the approach of music and the arts to schools, namely musicians and artists from the University of Aveiro, in a participatory, active and emotionally expressive dynamic, as well as constant reflection, problematisation, training and updating of the arts, their place as knowledge in education and culture;
  • Develop creative thinking and action in the context of approaching and reading the different curricula and school projects under study, sharing and interpreting, in action-research dynamics, processes and implementation paths that make it possible to respond to different challenges of education and culture in contemporary society, such as problem solving, critical thinking, communication and dialogue, cooperation and sharing, creativity; as well as, through them, the knowledge and understanding of various contents, codes and disciplinary dimensions, with particular emphasis on music and the arts;


3 — Research in music as an agent of social and emotional change
  • To perceive music and the arts as instruments and tools of communication, knowledge and culture, unveiling, experimenting and assessing possibilities of action, artistically effective, in favor of the development of attitudes, values, different literacies, systems of social cohesion and psychological well-being;
  • To study the psychological phenomena directly associated with the inclusive and social dimension of the artistic projects and experiences carried out, their particular purposes, especially from the perspective of their participants and subjects of study;
  • To investigate how, from a psychological point of view, the artistic experiences and achievements made make it possible to suggest and interpret relational and emotional, subjective and intersubjective processes;
  • To interpret and understand how artistic experiences have contributed to respond to the problematised social issues, perceiving, in the context of the people under study, what factors have contributed to this (artistic, social and psychological) and in what evidence they have materialised (objective and subjective, material and psychological).
Music | Engagement in Society
Music in the community, participatory practices in art or, in general, community art (the designations are various) are areas and domains of social intervention that have grown exponentially around the world. Reflecting, in their purposes and modes of action, the complexity that characterizes contemporary societies, they are consumed in a diverse set of initiatives aimed at specific population communities, with programs designed to respond to problems that are also unique and of a social nature.  Poverty, inequality and social discrimination, education and illiteracy (in its most transversal or particular dimensions), sadness and demotivation, ageing are, in general, the challenges to which numerous community projects, some of them national and with great projection outside the country, such as those of Casa da Música, in Porto, have sought to intervene and respond. The experience, the fruitive experience and the aesthetic contemplation, almost always in a context of interaction, collaboration and social sharing, being seen as powerful paths for the construction and transformation of behaviors, are guidelines that cover several implemented paths, some with socially and aesthetically expressive and significant results, as is the case, by way of example, of those that have been carried out in Portugal by DeCA teachers, such as Paulo Maria Rodrigues and the Companhia de Música Teatral; or by the Educative Service of Casa da Música, in Porto. Among many others.


Even due to the expansion it has had in the field, art in social and community contexts has therefore become a scientific field in development, involving different methodologies and study paradigms, from artistic research to interpretative and phenomenological research, the latter making it possible to describe and characterize, in the light of opportune and relevant disciplinary domains (psychology, social psychology, sociology, anthropology, multiple areas of education, medicine, etc.), the different meanings of the experiences carried out.


Education | School | Society | Creativity

Looking at the school and university context (which includes polytechnic education), while there are currently some programs specifically aimed at Music in the Community, including in national academic circuits, in addition to others that are developed in the European and international space, there are still few examples of actions germinated from educational and didactic purposes, aimed at responding to teacher training needs, including in the context of artistic music teaching. The expansion of the study of didactics to the field of non-formal practices, being still restricted, in the field of Music and namely in Portugal, or to reflections on some literature, or, above all, to contexts of Basic Education, has proved, however, especially in recent decades, an emerging and probably urgent reality. The reality that is witnessed especially in urban societies, including the literacy demands it places on multiple dimensions of knowledge, strengthens the conviction that music, as well as school, cannot be removed from the social and cultural contexts in which they are inscribed. And that these increasingly demand from their actors and representatives continuous and renewed attitudes of inquiry, discovery and search. The proof of this is the diversity and breadth of emerging phenomena around both complex technological realities, stylistic approaches, disciplinary and transdisciplinary engagement processes (physical theater, video art, digital art, visual music, spatial…); and, finally, models of knowledge, relationship and social interaction. A current topic of critical and sociological reflection, it inevitably leads to educational discourses and approaches, including theories on curriculum, which have been shaped, in their diversity, in searches for improvement and transformation, even of practices and their relations with society.


Reflecting on music in schools, conservatories and universities in the 21st century is therefore, like reflection on schools and education itself, a vast field of challenges. Not only of critical research, experimentation, confrontation and involvement with reality and culture, but also of creative and imaginative potential among all its actors.


Arts | Artistic Knowledge | Creative Thinking

Regardless of the philosophies around which, in different circumstances and educational conjunctures, ways of being valued and architected are argued, in theory in practice, the literature is extensive, both of a sociological and psychological nature, looking at the arts, namely music, as a construction, not only of knowledge, but of experiences / experiences, including those of a personal and social nature, aesthetically significant. That is, in view of their functions in the curricula, more than their relevance to the development of intrinsically performative processes and skills, human, emotional, contemplativeand transformative aspects are emphasized that, probably more than any other area of knowledge, can come from them, especially when governed by practices aligned with such purposes. Community art and participatory practices in art, including those that have been developed through music, including in Portugal, are protagonists of these movements, and are reported in numerous bibliographies.


In addition, there are other enamors, namely around what artistic thinking can imply. The way in which artistic practices, such as music, especially when not delimited by the focus on technical and interpretative aspects, raise forms of questioning and seeking answers to challenges, being particularly valued in psychology and around themes such as creativity and intelligence, is a reason for unfolding its value, both in the various curricula and in political and educational reflection. Aligned with such debates are more recently created and disseminated ministerial documents, such as the Plano Nacional das Artes(2019), which includes the idea that the methodology underlying artistic thinking, when shaped by paths that cross critical inquiry, “undisciplined” intuition, creative imagination and holistic views of reality, can play a decisive role in constellating and transforming knowledge, including that which is structured on the scientific model. And so, likewise, in such a way of looking, holistically, at the world, where the school dwells. To understand it. To (re)value it. To reinvent it.


In summary

The justification, then, of making music and art travel to society – and, in this way, of the study of Paluí itself; of continuing the creation of paths and resources of realization, of imagining horizons or utopias; of giving voice to specific groups and communities; of providing means to build choices; of making accessible different ways of interpreting, feeling, contemplating, transforming and understanding the world is inevitably connected with the vicissitudes of what it is, today, to live in society. Making it a better world.