Shop > Artists' Books

Out of Stock

Asking the Audience: Participatory Art in 1980s New York

Adair Rounthwaite
University of Minnesota Press
Artists' Books
15.3 × 25.2 × 1.5 cm
280 pp
Art History

The 1980s was a critical decade in shaping today’s art production. While newly visible work concerned with power and identity hinted at a shift toward multiculturalism, the ‘80s were also a time of social conservatism that resulted in substantial changes in arts funding. In Asking the Audience, Adair Rounthwaite uses this context to analyze the rising popularity of audience participation in American art during this important decade.

Rounthwaite explores two seminal and interrelated art projects sponsored by the Dia Art Foundation in New York: Group Material’s Democracy and Martha Rosler’s If You Lived Here…. These projects married issues of social activism—such as homelessness and the AIDS crisis—with various forms of public participation, setting the precedent for the high-profile participatory practices currently dominating global contemporary art. Rounthwaite draws on diverse archival images, audio recordings, and more than thirty new interviews to analyze the live affective dynamics to which the projects gave rise. Seeking to foreground the audience experience in understanding the social context of participatory art, she argues that affect is key to the audience’s ability to exercise agency within the participatory artwork.

From artists and audiences to institutions, funders, and critics, Asking the Audience traces the networks that participatory art creates between various agents, demonstrating how, since the 1980s, leftist political engagement has become a cornerstone of the institutionalized consumption of contemporary art.

Softcover, perfect-bound, b&w and colour

  1. Asking the Audience

Related Items

  1. Grace Lee Boggs: Living for Change
  2. Dedication(s)
  3. Christian Jankowski: Magic Circle
  4. Terence Koh: A Beaver Tail (bookwork)
  5. Brian Kennon: Untitled #2 / KE
  6. Parkett #74
  7. Gerry Schum
  8. Kristian Handberg: Conquering the Present in the Long Sixties
  9. Adam Lauder: Out of School: Information Art and the Toronto School of Communication
  10. Arnaud Gerspacher: The Owls Are Not What They Seem: Artist as Ethologist
  11. Abigail Solomon-Godeau: Photograph at the Dock
  12. Edmund Carpenter: Two Essays: Chief & Greed
  13. Péter György: The Two Kassels
  14. Kodwo Eshun: Dan Graham: Rock My Religion
  15. Hanne Lippard: This Embodiment
  16. IKREK - ponto e vírgula (semi-colon)
  17. Lars Ahlstrom and Hans Anders Molin: Airspace
  18. David Askevold and Christina Ritchie: Activating the Archive 4: Double Agent
  19. Colin Campbell and Bruce ed. Ferguson: Activating the Archive 2: Otherwise Worldly
  20. Greg Curnoe: Blue Book no. 8