Arnd Schneider and Chris Wright’s new book Anthropology and Art Practice has just been published by Bloomsbury Press. This volume includes a chapter I wrote called ‘An Invisible Line: Active Pass to IR9’. It explores some of the thinking and methodology behind the collaboratively produced video work that Richard Wilson and I produced for the 2008 New Forms Festival in Vancouver, at VIVO Media Arts. I can’t wait to get my copy and read the rest of the essays and interviews. Congratulations to all involved, and my sincere thanks to the editors for the honor of being included among many excellent contributors.
From the publisher:
Anthropology and Art Practice takes an innovative look at new experimental work informed by the newly-reconfigured relationship between the arts and anthropology. This practice-based and visual work can be characterised as ‘art-ethnography’. In engaging with the concerns of both fields, this cutting-edge study tackles current issues such as the role of the artist in collaborative work, and the political uses of documentary. The book focuses on key works from artists and anthropologists that engage with ‘art-ethnography’ and investigates the processes and strategies behind their creation and exhibition.
The book highlights the work of a new generation of practitioners in this hybrid field, such as Anthony Luvera, Kathryn Ramey, Brad Butler and Karen Mizra, Kate Hennessy and Jennifer Deger, who work in a diverse range of media – including film, photography, sound and performance. Anthropology and Art Practice suggests a series of radical challenges to assumptions made on both sides of the art/anthropology divide and is intended to inspire further dialogue and provide essential reading for a wide range of students and practitioners.
“Those familiar with the two previous outstanding collections edited by Schneider and Wright, examining the relationships between art and anthropology, will find this addition, making a trilogy, equally indispensable. The distinctive value of this collection is indeed its close examination of ‘practice’ amid the growing importance of thinking and experiment that blurs the boundaries between anthropological research and artistic intervention. No other work better shows, rather than tells, what ‘keywords’ like performance, collaboration, participation, installation, and curatorial/ ethnographic method mean in this lively realm of the senses, imagination, and contemporary curating.” – George E. Marcus, Director, Center for Ethnography, University of California, Irvine
“One of the most promising directions for new research into contemporary art practice can be found in the rapprochement between art history and anthropology, as artists increasingly find themselves working in complex social contexts beyond the confines of galleries and museums. Schneider and Wright’s collection provides an invaluable compendium of current research at this important disciplinary intersection.” – Grant Kester is Professor of Art History at UCSD, USA and author of ‘The One and the Many: Contemporary Collaborative Art in a Global Context’