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 it life, energy and creativity. They make it matter in people’s lives.
They’re also what has kept me working in community art for so many 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.
Nor has it 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 with. There are over 300 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 and, since 2019, the book is available. I hope you find something useful—and thanks for visiting.