Relational art and Open Space

3th Dec to 21st 2012, Promenade Linz, Austria.

Relational art or relational (and open space) aesthetics is a mode or tendency in fine art practice originally observed and highlighted by French art critic Nicolas Bourriaud. Bourriaud defined the approach simply as, “a set of artistic practices which take as their theoretical and practical point of departure the whole of human relations and their social context, rather than an independent and private space.

Whoever comes is [sic] the right people reminds participants that they don’t need the CEO and 100 people to get something done, you need people who care. And, absent the direction or control exerted in a traditional meeting, that’s who shows up in the various breakout sessions of an open-space meeting.

Whenever it starts is the right time reminds participants that “spirit and creativity do not run on the clock.”

Wherever it happens is the right place reminds participants that space is opening everywhere all the time. Please be concious and aware. – Tahrir Square is one famous example.

Whatever happens is the only thing that could have reminds participants that once something has happened, it’s done—and no amount of fretting, complaining or otherwise rehashing can change that. Move on.

When it’s over, it’s over reminds participants that we never know how long it will take to resolve an issue, once raised, but that whenever the issue or work or conversation is finished, move on to the next thing. Don’t keep rehashing just because there’s 30 minutes left in the session. Do the work, not the time.

Our starting point was the praxis of Relational Art and Open Space where artist, artwork and public loose their meaning towards an unpredictable happening.  

The OPEN CONTAINERRR project was not only about art and openness, but moreover a project with unfold and not yet definable results, which would emerge from the processes which took place according to the principles of sharing and collaboration. A process that used the sphere of human interaction as a place where a workshop and a lecture could become an artwork itself, where dialogue and discussion contributed to a reflection about our present sociocultural environment.

It was what springed from this practices what made the proposal useful and meaningful.

* All activities were carried out and offered for free, albeit there were some costs for material (for “external participant e.g in workshops and only for material costs, which directly derive from the participation in the workshop)

* All production was developed under Free licenses.

* It was a condition to participate in the dynamics of the Project as a whole, participating in a regular way in the different work schedules, maintenance and attention to public.

* If you didn’t find yourself in any situation where you were neither learning nor contributing: Give greetings, use your two feet, and go do something useful. Responsibility resided with you.

Video documentation by César Escudero Andaluz:

Das internationale Kollektiv “Expanderrr” in Linz bemüht sich seit 2011 “Leerständen, zumeist in öffentlicher Hand, die ihrer Nutzung beraubt wurden, wieder einen Sinn zu geben und ein breites Feld für öffentliche und vor allem offene Kultur und Struktur zu bieten.”

Im Dezember 2011 wurde ein Container an der Promende in Linz von KünstlerInnen und PraktikerInnen aus kunstverwandeten Disziplinen eine Woche lang genutzt um sich über “Relational Art and Open Space” auszutauschen, zu informieren und diskutieren. Ein weiterer wichtiger Aspekt von Expanderrr ist Open Source und Sharing. Die KünstlerInnen, Vortragenden und WorkshopleiterInnen arbeiten alle mit Open Source Technologien.

Zu sehen sind ein paar Eindrücke der Woche und worum es bei Expanderrr genauer geht.

Anmerkung der Redaktion:
Das Interview mit Expanderrr und ist zum Teil auf Englisch sowie auch der Mittschnitt des Vortrags.

Weitere Infos zu Expanderrr: