A Restless Art is about community and participatory art. It’s about what those practices are, how people think about them, why they’re done and what happens as a result. It’s called ‘a restless art’ because this work is unstable, changing and contested. It involves a range of ideas and practices. It crackles with artistic, political, ethical and philosophical tensions that give participatory art life, energy and creativity. They are what make it matter in people’s lives.
They’re also what has kept me working in community art for over 35 years. A Restless Art is a way to think about my own experience, so there’s some history here. But the history matters if it helps understand and strengthen what people are doing now—and participatory art has never seemed stronger or more vital.
And it has never seemed more necessary. A new generation of artists is working in new ways, all over the world. I’m learning about work in Egypt, Turkey, Ukraine, Greece, Morocco and many other places and some of that is here.
If you care about participatory art, I hope you’ll find things on these pages to inspire, encourage and interest you – and things to argue against. There are more 100 posts on the blog, and the categories will help you find what interests you. There are pages about projects, resources and links. Long case studies are being added every two weeks between April and November 2018, when the book itself will be published. I hope you find something of interest—and thanks for visiting.