Socialisms: Conceptual, Material, Artistic

May 2019

Initiator Robin Vanbesien

If we are looking for one position from which this work of struggle and renewal has already begun, it is this: that since there are many peoples and cultures, there will be many socialisms.”

(Raymond Williams, Resources of Hope, 1989)

This seminar explores the impact and potential of art in social situations and processes, assuming that art shapes these situations and processes and is therefore fundamentally complicit in it—potentially in both a positive and negative sense.

We look at artistic projects that focus more specifically on social organisation and community formation, its structures and infrastructure, paying special attention to the treatment of minorities. How should an artistic project situate itself in this, being mindful of the many potential pitfalls, and commemorate co-creation independently of classical (paternalistic, neoliberal) regimes of care and 'outreach'?

How can new and existing forms of artistic co-creation lead to genuine forms of broad social emancipation? How, finally, can this process lead to autonomous artistic production?