Letting go

Today, I approved the printer’s proofs—the moment of letting go. Even on Sunday, as I went through it one last time, I was finding egregious mistakes. It’s hard to believe they’ve all been caught, despite the efforts of several proofreaders. I’ve been publishing books since 1993 and it seems only to have got harder. Perhaps it’s true that, as Elvis Costello sang, ‘It isn’t youth, it’s fearlessness / That has been wasted on the young‘. So, to mark the moment, here’s the cover of the book, with a beautiful photo by Katarina Zlatec, of ‘Osunčana mjesta’ a participatory art work by Zoran Pavelić for Dotrščina Virtual Museum, Zagreb, Croatia. To me it speaks of the creativity, seriousness, engagement and courage of the best participatory art today.

On the back of the book, are some quotes from readers, including one from Stella Duffy, which ends: ‘this is a hopeful book, focused on deeds not words, on activity and action, which is fortunate—there is much to be done‘. That seems a good way to close the year. On 17 January 2019, the book will be published. It will cost £10, but will also be freely available as a PDF on this site. As this year ends, I send my thanks to the hundreds of people who have helped, and to the readers of this blog, with season’s greetings and hope for a happy and peaceful new year. 


  1. Dear François, Last night, Rien, Paul, Joost and I met over dinner to brainstorm about the immediate future of the Sharing Arts Society between now and 2024. We are very proud to be included in your book with our St Martin’s Parade and are very curious indeed to learn about all the other restless artworks in your book that, all together, form a swarm that somehow moves together despite countless differences between us all. Thanks for making the effort to try and gather us for an ephemeral moment between the covers of your book. We hope you allow yourself a bit of rest after all that restlessness and wish you a wonderful Christmas. Rien, Paul, Joost, Eugene


    1. It’s been a privilege to meet so many artists and activists doing wonderful work across Europe, making different, better paths than those that dominate our public life at the moment. You really are a parliament of dreams. I love the idea of gathering all these friends between the covers of the book – like a virtual ICAF perhaps! I’ve got the date of the 2019 parade in my diary and I’ll do all I can to be there. In the meantime, I wish you, Rien, Paul and Joost a very happy Christmas and strength in the year to come, François


Comments are closed.