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Artificial Hells: Participatory Art and the Politics of Spectatorship Paperback – July 24, 2012

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  • Artificial Hells: Participatory Art and the Politics of Spectatorship
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Claire Bishop has articulated an important historical overview of the global emergence of participatory art ... Her controversial and thought-provoking conclusions courageously trouble our assumptions about the effectiveness of political artworks, questioning their oppositional quality, their effects on the audiences they reach, and their relation to the institutions that promote them.”—Frank Jewett Mather Award, 2013

“Bishop’s arguments are convincingly supported and potentially very contentious...A critically challenging work of vital scholarship.”—Publishers Weekly

“An essential title for contemporary art history scholars and students as well as anyone who has witnessed a participatory art ‘happening’ and thought, ‘Now that’s art!’ or ‘That’s art?’”—Library Journal

“Bishop seeks a standard for judging participatory works...She draws on the writings of French philosopher Jacques Rancière to argue that art must maintain a degree of autonomy and unreadability in order to resist co-option by the political and economic forces intent on imposing a false social consensus.”—Eleanor Heartney, Art in America

“Pellucid”—Alexander Provan, New York Observer

“The good intentions of contemporary artists frequently pave a road to hell. Claire Bishop follows their descent into the inferno and invites her readers to share her fascination with what she finds along the way. Artificial Hells combines vast historical knowledge with a precise analysis of individual artistic practices. So much so that at the end of her new book we have begun to fall in love with hell—under the condition that it remains artificial.”—Boris Groys, author of Art Power

About the Author

Claire Bishop is Associate Professor in the History of Art department at the CUNY Graduate Center, New York. She is the author of Installation Art: A Critical History; Artificial Hells: Participatory Art and the Politics of Spectatorship; and editor of Participation. in 2008 she co-curated the exhibition “Double Agent” at the ICA. She is a regular contributor to Artforum, October, Tate Etc, IDEA, and other international art magazines.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 390 pages
  • Publisher: Verso; Original edition (July 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844676900
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844676903
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #198,916 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Unquestionably informative and chronologically coherent, Bishop's book is great for the advanced scholar or connoisseur of performance and socially engaged art. That said, there's a lot of information with tendrils across centuries as well as mediums, and the language is very forthright in presenting Bishop's opinions; so, it's potentially a bit daunting for those new to the subject.
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great for history and trauma
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Claire Bishop convincingly raises questions about "social practice" art by providing a detailed historical overview along with a thorough examination of contemporary work in the field. "Artificial Hells" successfully clarifies what art is and what it is not.
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Artifical Hells is a must read book, not only for arts'followers. Bishop's point of view is a clever and unique one.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I can't read this book on my mac. I've chatted with tech support and they know its a problem but they can't fix it. I can't even select the book on Kindle for Mac or the whole thing freezes up. I've read bits of the book on my iPhone, and it seems like a great book, but I don't have any other way to publicly complain about this problem. Sorry Claire! Kindle Tech! Get your act together!!!
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