Directeur d’études at the École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales and Directeur de recherche at the CNRS, in Paris. He has done fieldwork on the shamanistic traditions and the use of picture writing among the Kuna of Panama (1977-1981). He has worked on ritual action, the ritual use of images, and non-Western Arts of Memory , in the perspective of an Anthropology of memory and imagination inspired by the work of Aby Warburg. A member of the Laboratoire d’Anthropologie Sociale of the Collège de France since 1985, he has been a Getty Scholar at the Getty Institute for the History of Art and the Humanities in Los Angeles (1994-95), a Fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg in Berlin (2002-2003), and a Visiting Fellow at the King’s College of the University of Cambridge (2012-2013). Recently, he has been a second time invited as a Getty Scholar at the Getty Research Institute for 2016-2017. Since 2002, he is Permanent Visiting Professor at the University of Venezia (IUAV). Among his books: La memoria rituale – Follia e immagine del Bianco in una tradizione sciamanica amerindiana, Firenze 1993, Naven or the Other Self, New York, Brill 1998 (with M.Houseman) L’image rituelle, Paris, L’Herne, 2014 (with Carlos Fausto), The Chimera Principle – An Anthropology of Memory and Imagination, Chicago, Hau Books/Chicago University Press, 2015, Translating Worlds – The epistemological space of translation (with William Hanks), Hau Books/Chicago University Press, 2016 and L’Objet-Personne – Une anthropologie de la croyance visuelle, Paris, 2017.