I Want You to PARTICIPATE || pause for thought

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Cromer Road



United Kingdom

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This one-day colloquium aims to contribute to Harpin and Nicholson’s ‘reflective response to why the contemporary moment appears somehow to need participation’ (2017: 15).

Focus will be placed on questions regarding the resistances, crises, or ethical dilemmas encountered by the invited artists, and creative researchers when using participatory formats. The aim is to collect direct insights from an eclectic group of artists, and creative researchers who work across installation, intermedia, immersive, applied art, and performance, and who utilise these formats.

In his critique The Nightmare of Participation architect, curator, and thinker Markus Miessen addresses that it is necessary to separate oneself from using magic buzz-words like ‘sustainability, participation, democracy’ as billpostings, and that ‘one must tackle their underlying motives through contextualized practice’ (2010: 242).

The invited practitioners and practitioner-researchers will therefore be asked to reflect on any (or none) of the below questions:

How do they perceive their role within these works?

What do they think they contextualise with their practice?

What constitutes something as pseudo-participatory?

After every two or three presentations (talks, performance lectures etc.) the lens will turn to round table discussions for 15min. It will therefore use a participatory format (Open Space) as a way of exchanging views, and reflections between practitioners, practitioner-researchers, and participants.

Overall aim is to contribute to the ‘nuanced language’ (Bishop, 2012) of contemporary participatory work, by assuming a critical stance, and the insights stemming from practitioners in the field.

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You may drop in for the whole day, or for a session (see schedule below).

Sandwiches, cake, tea, and coffee will be provided during the break free of charge.


12.45-1.00: Registration

1.00 -1.10 Intro

1.15-1.30 Speaker 1 (Ben Eyes)

1.30-1.45 Speaker 2 (Emma Gee)

1.45-2.00 Round table

2.00-2.15 Speaker 3 (Alison Andrews)

2.15-2.30 Speaker 4 (Katie Day-The Other Way Works)

2.30-2.45 Round table

2.45-3.30 BREAK sandwiches and coffee

3.30-3.45 Speaker 5 (Lucy Steggals- The Saturday Museum)

3.45-4.00 Speaker 6 (Alaena Turner)

4.00-4.15 Round table

4.15-4.30 Speaker 7 (Sam McKay)

4.30-4.45 Speaker 8 (Xristina Penna)

4.45-5.00 Round table

5.00-5.15 Closing and summing up

For more information on this event please contact Xristina Penna:

Supported by Post Graduate Research & Audience Engagement and Experience Research Group, PCI, University of Leeds.

Supported by HEFCE and ACE via The Exchange project

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Cromer Road



United Kingdom

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