Theodor W. Adorno described artworks as windowless monads, for it is through their double character as both autonomous and “fait social” that unsolved antagonisms of reality return in them as immanent problems of form. Socially committed contemporary artists, however, experiment with other spheres of reference. They involve human beings as actors in communicative processes of reality construction, thus creating new spaces of possibility. The “New Relations in Art and Society” conference hosted by the Campus Museum of the Art Collections of the Ruhr-University of Bochum (RUB) considered this challenge. Taking the exhibition “Mischa Kuball: NEW POTT” and the mentioned conference as their starting point, various authors reflected on positions of participation in socially engaged art, discussing theoretical frameworks, artistic projects, and institutional challenges. This book presents participatory art projects and includes contributions from Claire Bishop, Beatrice Gibson, Thomas Hirschhorn, Sandra Höptner, Mischa Kuball, Kristin Marek, Nina Möntmann, Jacques Rancière, Eva Schmidt, Gerald Schröder, Beate Söntgen, Apolonia Sustersic, Franz Erhard Walther, Friederike Wappler, Astrid Wege, Lawrence Weiner and Harald Welzer. The publication is part of the series of artists’ projects edited by Christoph Keller.
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