laboratoire écologie et art pour une société en transition

The challenges of participative and co-creative artistic practices

Principle of the course

The course offered by Tecla Raynaud* aims to foster individual and collective reflection on the challenges of participatory artistic practices. The researcher will build on the discussions and topics that each participant wishes to tackle, offering both theoretical and practical insights. This training course is based on a participatory methodology that draws on the practical and theoretical knowledge of each participant. These will be combined and supplemented by various sources and the results of Raynaud’s work.

General questions

Below are just some of the questions we will be tackling, through discussions, case studies, and mind maps, which will be cross-referenced with theoretical contributions from sociology, political science, art history, and the practical knowledge of artists, curators, and public authority representatives. Beforehand, we invite you to reflect on your practice by answering the following questions, either succinctly or in greater detail, depending on your experience, and we will flesh them out together (examples to support your comments are welcome):

  • How do you define participatory artistic practices? What terms do you use to define your practice?
  • What do you look for in participatory artistic practices? What do they bring to you? What do you think they bring to the participants?
  • What do you consider to be a successful participatory/collaborative art project? What is a participatory/collaborative art project that did not work? How do you assess and measure these successes/failures?
  • Do these projects systematically produce artistic objects? How do you assess the artistic or non-artistic dimension of the productions?
  • Do these projects have a political dimension? If so, in what way; where do the political dimensions play out?

* Tecla Raynaud is a doctoral student in Sociology at the Max Weber Centre in Lyon. Her work focuses on participatory practices and the links between art and politics in the visual and contemporary arts, more specifically on participatory practices and the experiences of artists working in a participatory context. She is also a teacher (university, art school) and was a project manager in the cultural association sector for 8 years.


25 January 2024

The first day will be devoted to constructing common definitions of participatory/collaborative artistic practices and to reflecting on the positioning of the players in the projects. We will: work on the basis of scales of participation developed by artists, political scientists, sociologists, and curators; reflect together on the players involved in the projects and their interests, and the points of convergence and divergence between them; continue with a case study based on a past project by least and finish with an introduction to the sociology of the work of guest artists.

Time : 9h00 - 12h30 et 14h00 - 18h00
Place : Pavillon ADC - Place Sturm 1 - 1206 Genève

26 January 2024

The second day will begin with a second case study—an ongoing project by least—which will enable us to discuss the preparation and closure of the projects. We will then tackle the question of the political issues involved in participatory/co-creative artistic practices, drawing on different conceptions of participation in art (relational, militant, agonistic, socio-cultural, art therapy) followed by reflection on the authorship of the projects and the resulting productions.

Time : 9h00 - 12h30 et 14h00 - 18h00
Place : Pavillon ADC - Place Sturm 1 - 1206 Genève