project . 2008 - 2010 . Closed

Project on Creative Practices Beyond Borders: Arts Interaction, Sonic Diaspora, Performativity Exchange

UK Research and Innovation
Funder: UK Research and InnovationProject code: AH/G000778/1
Funded under: AHRC Funder Contribution: 50,507 GBP
Status: Closed
31 Aug 2008 (Started) 30 Aug 2010 (Ended)

This project engages with creative practices across a number of borders, in geographical, conceptual, disciplinary and genre terms. We are interested in addressing questions of media change, social mobility and creative collaboration (eg. at international art festivals and biennales), paying particular attention to border-crossings and transcultural engagement (joint work, media linkings, transfers, recontextualisations). We pursue this insofar as border crossings in several senses have creative, economic and social implications for new visual, aural and dynamic cultural debates. Conceptually, we are interested in performitivity, transgression, affect, aesthetics, inclusion/exclusion, precarious lifestyles, labour, the economics and materials of creative practice, adventure, dissonance, inspiration. We will develop this through a network of research scholars and through laboratory work that draws on collaborative cross border affiliations among what we will call a multitude of creative vernacular cosmopolitanisms.\n\nWe want to put researchers with Border experience (Europe, Berlin, India, Bengal) into active movement around our theme, so this project takes up questions of creative and cultural practice that are aural, visual and performative in a primary and structuring way. Starting from a critique of linearity and the hegemony of text, this initiative occurs in the context of challenges and changes impacting the creativity of the Arts, as part of the movement-oriented conception of a creative cosmopolitanism that is insurgent world-wide today. We suggest that creative practices thought of as movement provoke a radical challenge to the traditional boundaries between, and conceptualisation of, previously more stable textual formations in academic frameworks, genres, forms, and media. What is great about this idea is that we see communication as a space that is a dynamic contact zone, a place of transformation, of transgression and innovation. In painting, photography, performance, radio, cinema, video and design, new dynamics and ideas offering seemingly dangerous cross-border innovations promise to forge a new scholarship of movement, creativity and excitement. The border crossing innovations established in this contact zone offer much that is worthy of examination and development. \n\nThe project assumes that the contemporary conjuncture is framed by / and stands out as a reaction to / domestic initiatives in contemporary cultural resource management conceived as business. The dialectical syncopation here reacts critically to old school commercialization and industry writ large. Opportunities abound, entrepreneurs swoop; but they do so in ways that perhaps also need to be rethought in the radical terminology of flow and mobility that escapes the rule and text books of convention. The context for this includes the discursive formation of multiple globalisations, cultural encounters and interaction of tension and conflict, dialogic engagements between those whose practices stem from different cultural spheres and political orientations. All this needs to be rethought. A second tendency running against the commercial script is the development of new media and patterns of cultural agency that transform expectations today / diasporic media and cross border initiatives (radio, piracy, biennales, international aspects of Documenta etc) are rapidly forging new and exciting kinds of creative collaboration. Contemporary creativity may, in this situation, conspicuously adopt and appropriate the technologies and forms of commercial broadcast for surprising and subversive ends. The third tendency is the new convergence between culture and commodities. The productivity of hybrid, mixed, fusion forms of creativity offers irony, play, critique and inspiration as resources to commerce (this can of course be questioned) and the idea that there is only one 'mass' form of commodification or 'culture industry' is passing, outmoded or obsolete.

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