Artificial hells: participatory art and the politics of spectatorship

ISBN: 978-1-84467-690-3

DOI: 10.3202/

Artificial Hells is the first historical and theoretical overview of socially engaged participatory art or “social practice.” Claire Bishop follows the trajectory of twentieth-century art and examines key moments in the development of a participatory aesthetic. She not only scrutinizes the emancipatory claims made for these projects, but also provides an alternative to the ethical (rather than artistic) criteria invited by such artworks. Artificial Hells calls for a less prescriptive approach to art and politics, and for more compelling, troubling and bolder forms of participatory art and criticism.