social practice

Post image for Why I Don’t Buy the Premise of Christoph Büchel’s Icelandic Mosque Pavilion

I’ve been hesitant to embrace Christoph Büchel’s project for the Icelandic Pavilion at the 2015 Venice Biennale from the beginning.

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Post image for Reflections on a Weekend Devoted to Socially Engaged Art

BRISBANE, Australia — On the flight between Pittsburgh and Detroit, I felt art’s potential: Open Engagement 2015’s socially engaged projects had responded to the national discourse on social and racial justice.

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Post image for Picturing the People Inside Ebola Hazmat Suits

Late last summer, when the Ebola epidemic started spinning out of control, Mary Beth Heffernan couldn’t get her mind off it.

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Post image for Making Political Art with Bones and Stars

Earlier this month, Albuquerque-based social practice artists Naomi Natale and Susan McAllister, founders of the Art of Revolution, were among six others to receive the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation’s inaugural Artist as Activist fellowship.

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Post image for Between Theory and Action in Social Practice Art

That social practice is difficult to define is not a new problem. However, what I experienced was not so much a confusion of terms but a confusion of time: a series of talks that demonstrated the divide produced by the slowness of theory pitted against an active practice.

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Post image for MacArthur Grantee Rick Lowe on Art as Community

DALLAS — Vickery Meadow is the kind of place that makes the news for all the wrong reasons. An impoverished enclave for immigrants and refugees in Dallas, it has long been one of the city’s most violent neighborhoods.

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Post image for Learning Omaha: The Impossibility of Place (Part 4)

I’m home in Brooklyn now — I’ve been back for about three weeks. As the Department of Local Affairs starts up in Bed-Stuy, where I’m the artist in residence for the Laundromat Project, I’ve been thinking about different ways to frame and understand my summer.

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Chloë Bass's Department of Local Affairs office at Bemis Center

OMAHA — I walked from Nebraska to Iowa this morning, over the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge.

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Chloë Bass photo for

OMAHA — Both teaching and social practice ask a leader (artist, teacher, organizer) to codify and articulate a set of steps that are then acted out by a group. There’s a place for uncertainty, but it should be strategically applied: by choice, not default.

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Post image for Social Practice for Domestic Workers: The NannyVan

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Recently, I watched as a group of artists and activists stood outside the main branch of the Cambridge Public Library beside the brightly colored NannyVan, talking to a steady stream of nannies about their rights and the obligations of their employers.

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