The Autonomy Project


The word “Autonomy” sounds outdated. In an artistic field, this term finds itself unfortunately wedged between two possibilities: the romantic notion of the isolated Artist, developing works in a studio, unaffected by the socio-political beyond his walls; or the cold reality that to operate within those same socio-political arenas an artist and the mediators involved in a creative action are only there to facilitate public agenda(s) or to smooth social process. These two positions are not mutually exclusive. The current state of contemporary art practice in the Netherlands and other Western European countries is multicultural, globalised, professionalised. And it is within this multi-faceted geographic and cultural context that the Autonomy Project seeks to facilitate a number of events over the coming years (including a public debate and formal symposium) in different locations, bringing the issue and practice of Autonomy back into debate.  The Autonomy Project will be based in the south of the Netherlands. Its first activity is an experts’ March Meeting, held in Eindhoven, which will build the conceptual and experiential foundation for the rest of the programme. The meeting will be expanded on in the contexts of a publication and simultaneous internal seminars held in partnering institutions. A networked webspace will facilitate dialogue between the separate sites of discussion and bridge the themes addressed in the lead up to a joint Summer School.

Participating institutions include:
Dutch Art Institute, NL
Grizedale Art Centre, UK
Filter-Hamburg, DE/Detroit, USA
Liverpool Art and Design Academy, UK
Lectoraat Kunst en Publiek Ruimte, NL
Onderzoekschool Kunstgeschiedenis, NL
Onomatopee, NL
University of Hildesheim, Kunstwissenschaft, DE
VanAbbemuseum, NL

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