Pop-Up Art: performing creative disruption in social space

Burke, P 2016, Pop-Up Art: performing creative disruption in social space, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Art, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Pop-Up Art: performing creative disruption in social space
Author(s) Burke, P
Year 2016
Abstract In recent decades a more fluid relationship has developed between the artworld, commerce and the general public. In this context the distinction between the roles of artist, curator and audience are increasingly blurred. Pop-Up Art: Performing Creative Disruption in Social Space examines the blended nature of these relationships and how they can be negotiated. It does this through practice-led research in the form of pop-up performative interventions at highly regulated commercial and civic sites where art and the public intersect. These sites include art fairs, biennales and galleries as well as shopping precincts and busy streets. Recent theories in contemporary art cast these spaces as a contradictory fusion of commerce, civic regulation and everyday life—with varying types of competition and contestation, fraught with social fragmentation, unequal and exclusive access and competing communicative practices.

Pop-Up Art aims to manipulate these conditions in a new manner to contribute an understanding of art as social space. Incorporating both invited and impromptu performances, and entrepreneurial approaches in which the artist can engage audiences in a critique of social spaces, the pop-ups set out to challenge the shifting relationships of each site through new investigatory methods. Pop-Up Art inserts performance and participatory practice into live spaces in the street and the artworld. It combines fiction and humour to ‘perform surprise’ and disruption by employing the material, symbolic and social aspects of site. Pop-Up Art contends that contradiction can play an important role in activating critiques of the disposition of power structures. This is revealed through art practice that operates from a position of ‘close-distance’—it blends with commerce, civic regulation and everyday life but also creates interstices that unsettle conventions. Pop-Up Art aims to gently disrupt social patterns rather than dissipate into commercial activity, social works or entertainment. This research offers new knowledge and understandings of creative disruption within social space through performative art practice.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Art
Subjects Fine Arts (incl. Sculpture and Painting)
Art Theory
Performance and Installation Art
Keyword(s) performance
social space
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Created: Mon, 23 Jan 2017, 09:18:22 EST by Denise Paciocco
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