TrainWreck, or The Failures of Infrastructure: Reflections on a Creative People and Place project
Anthony Schrag (Queen Margaret University )
Paper short abstract:
This reflective text considers the 'failures of infrastructure' from the perspectives of a practitioner involved on a 6 month community art project funded by Creative People and Place. It asks what the ethical pitfalls such failures might engender - and who might take responsibility?
Paper long abstract:
This reflective text considers the 'failures of infrastructure' from the perspectives of a practitioner involved on a Creative People and Place funded participatory art project. It is presented from the point of view of a practitioner, and uses a single project to act as a microcosm of the practice in general, and encourage the field as a whole, to take stock of how we're working with people, why we choose this way of working, and to what end: it asks us to reflect on the various ethical pitfalls that can occur when participatory projects are insufficiently planned - and have insufficient infrastructural support. It asks to what extent responsibility can be taken when things go wrong - and who should take this responsibility: the artist, the cultural organisation, or the governmental policies that set up such structures in the first place? It is relevant to - and explores the intersection of - the fields of cultural policy (i.e., government/organisations), cultural management (arts organisations/institutions) and cultural production (i.e., artists/communities) as it concerns the infrastructure that links those fields together. It looks at the implementation of governmentally funded public art projects in practice, and argues that there are ethical ramifications to a lack of suitable and sufficient infrastructural support
Conflict and Activism