Imagining the Audience: Viewing Positions in Curatorial and Artistic Practice

Imagining the Audience: Viewing Positions in Curatorial and Artistic Practice
Library Shelf Location 13a.MALM
Publication Date 2012
Description Imagining the Audience, Viewing Positions in artistic and curatorial practice is a book about the role of the audience in artistic and curatorial practice. Based on specific examples, internationally recognized artists and curators present how they imagine the individual viewer’s mental, physical and emotional experience of the arts event. When audience is mentioned in the context of contemporary art, it is most commonly in association with mediation and communication after the production of an art work or exhibition. The book Imagining the Audience will instead focus on the role of the audience within the artistic and curatorial process. How does an artist or curator imagine the experience, movement and mental process of the individual viewer? And how does this perspective influence the actual work and the way the viewer experiences the work? As opposed to socially engaged practices and participation, we will be looking at practices that engage the individual viewer’s body and consciousness. We have seen this in video installations where the movement of the viewer adds significant meaning or interpretation to the work (Doug Aitken, Eija-Liisa Ahtila) in immersive sound works where the viewer is the main character (Janet Cardiff’s walks) as well as works where the minds of the audience are taken else where (Raimundas Malasauskas Hypnotic Show) or artworks opens for the viewer to empathise with the people portrayed (Phil Collins) and performative works where the actions of the audience is choreographed be the artist (Roman Ondak, Tino Sehgal). In the last few years a generation of artists in the field between contemporary art and performance have developed situations where the viewer steps inside of a situations which is either sound based or a live event and where the presence of the audience is vital for the development and existence of the work (Alex Reynolds, Hans Rosenström, Lundahl & Seitl). Moving further into the field of performance we would find companies like Gob Squad or Signa Sörensen who invite the audience to step into a different world over a longer period of time. In curatorial terms we are looking at strategies of involving the audience in terms of dramaturgy or choreography of an exhibition, how a shift of context or situation will change the experience of the viewer, how spatial, temporary and other aspects are created within the curatorial craft of constructing the situation of the audience. We are looking at practices which aren’t necessarily based on identification (as in for instance feature film) but which serve as a projection surface or platform for the thoughts and emotions of the viewer. The focus of the project could be described as how the curator or artist imagines the viewer in order to create both a sensory and a mental experience and where in some cases the works would not even exist without the embodied viewer inside of it. A quote from Thomas Hirschhorn could describe this: ”I want the public to be inside a brain in action”. The book is part of a larger research project looking at the extensive theory of Viewing Positions in aesthetics and film theory applying this on contemporary art in order to gain a more differentiated understanding of the role of the audience. The book is a collaboration between Riksutställningar/Swedish Exhibition Agency and Mobile Art Production. It will be released in December 2012.
ISBN 9789197998550
Quantity 1
Pages 240
Editors Magdalena Malm, Annika Wik
Format Paperback
Publisher Art And Theory Publishing, Amsterdam
Category Museum/Gallery Studies
Keyword Audiences
Language English

Other Artists

Other Recent Books