Welcome to the Art of the MOOC, Merging Public Art and Experimental Education. Our module today is dedicated to the idea of cultural infrastructures, but also all these historical terms that have been used to talk about social art. In other modules we will address the idea of socially engaged arts through the writings of Pablo Helguera. But also the idea of social practice works as Shannon Jackson has theorized it. But Nado, really important term that has been used was coined by Nicolas Bourriaud and it's relational aesthetics. Can you tell us a little bit about it? >> Well, just to say first of all, I have to say, there are so many terms. And it's important to indicate to our friends in the audience that they are not necessarily clearly defined, but in fact come out of an emergence of an art form that different people have coined terms from around the world. So relational aesthetics was coined by Nicolas Bourriaud in 1992 in his book titled Relational Aesthetics. It's also useful to know that none of the artists admit being part of it and actually refused to consider being part of it at all. But it's kind of famously demonstrated by artist Rikrit Tiravanija who did a project at 303 Gallery in New York called Untitled Free. Where he sat in the gallery with a kitchen and made pad Thai and the audience could come and eat it. It was a basic social relationship. And the idea being that you would emphasize the social nature of an artwork. And often, these projects were very discrete. They took place in gallery settings, and they weren't complex social arrangements, but in fact very pared down simple social relationships. >> And as Nado was pointing out, these terms often are defined broadly, loosely, and they rarely are coined by artists themselves. Many key terms that are use to describe this work have been covered elsewhere in our MOOC's lectures and guest presentations. But remember that most of them like participatory art, relational aesthetics, social practice work, socially engaged art, happenings, or living as form, appear in a glossary of terms. A key concept worth highlighting in a module focused on art history and aesthetics, is what scholar and theorist Claire Bishop has powerfully analyzed in several books and essays. She calls antagonistic practice a kind of art making that exacerbates intentionally or stresses the idea of social tension. Works of this kind don't look to avoid trouble or avoid confrontation. They actually seek it out and then create a work for it. They are, of course, artworks that are incredibly difficult to engage with, but the argument for them is that we don't only want positive, happy, you know, work that deals with social life. Social life is full of tension, full of problematic relationships. So, antagonistic practice is only one mode that can engage with these difficulties. Another important point has been made by decolonial theorists and artists who have argued that these types of social practices have been around for millenia, centuries. In fact, they have been the main mode of cultural production. Rituals, dancing, performances, things that we're not turned immediately into objects to be put in a museum. These decolonial theories argued that it's actually only the West who has recently embraced this when the rest of the world has been opened to it all along. And it's therefore, that we should be skeptical for all of these terms and periods put by Western canonized art history to these practices. So, what these decolonial theories often try to do is bring together these more contemporary, recent approaches to art-making with a longer history, a continuity of art making. [MUSIC] Now, through the exploration of the ways in which socially engaged public art has been included and excluded from particular art historical narratives, aesthetic theories and international art institutions or events. We can also follow social practices that question the overall function and logic of conventional art and art history. Let's start by understanding how these forms of art have gone from near invisibility in the margins to be included in some of the most established art markets, exhibiting institutions, and scholarly publications. Let's start with artist spaces. So Nado, you've talked in your publications but also you've curated exhibits and projects with this notion of living as form, right? >> Yeah. >> One of the things that a lot of the artists who do social art have done and insisted on is this blurring of the separation of the everyday life and art. And as we enter the part of our module where we look at infrastructures that produce art, social art, one key side for this blurring of life and art has been the artist space itself. Sometimes it's the home of the artist, sometimes it's an artists' space that is run collectively. We could name so many of these spaces. Andy Warhol's factory, Jack Smith's loft. Homes and his various cities that he lived in. >> Cabaret Voltaire. >> Yeah, there's so many of them. So can you, can we talk about a study that is particular about this? >> Well, sure, just, I mean, what I think is really important about these things too is if you think art, historically so much has come out of these spaces. They're very generative. They're not authored. It's hard to think of them as artworks. But I think of a J Morgan Pruett's Mildred's Lane, which is an eastern Pennsylvania. She actually has a whole language around what is kind of style of working that blurs art and life. She also has comes at it from a radically feminist perspective as a woman who has a child and tries to maintain a family, trying to separate that from her work literally is not possible. So she has to incorporate it all together. Mildred's Lane is a place where artists come and gather. They give lectures all summer. They have a kind of residency program. They have fellowships. But they also have a kind of of aggregate space of coming together and becoming artists together. And she has a term she uses, which I love called, workstyles. And this is a different way of trying to come up with a language that is talking about art but it's also talking about living. And so, in her idea of workstyles, and she's from the South so she also uses this word [FOREIGN], which is a kind of cleanliness or cleaning up. She also uses the word comportment, but all these words that kind of hybridize the domestic and the work and art, has a radical gesture. And it's embodied in her project Mildred's Lane.