Ambi_ : enterprise artworks, the artist-consultant, and contemporary attitudes of ambivalence
Author(s)Salter, Carson (Carson Charles)
Enterprise artworks, the artist-consultant, and contemporary attitudes of ambivalence
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Architecture.
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This thesis will discuss selected cases in which artists have undertaken projects directly relating to a business practice, and the relevant terms for understanding those projects. In the absence of a physical product (as is often the case with conceptual artwork and knowledge-based production), we rely on other ways of understanding the producer's work: typically, we look to distinctions amongst familiar production categories and supposedly strict differences in the native behaviors of artists or businessmen. Where these hard categories may once have helped identify the source and intent of work, they seem to hinder apt description in contemporary practice. I will argue that comprehension of current artistic undertakings requires an ontology of a middle position-between art and business-and regard for sustained attitudinal ambivalence. This paper aims to aid the reading of the growing field of artistic undertakings that deal with business practices, especially focusing on those in which an artist avails knowledge to a non-art market. To this end, the thesis lays out the methods and poetics of such projects in sections titled CASES and TERMS. The first chapter provides a background for enterprise artworks, and overviews the development of the terms Enterprise Culture and the New Spirit. The second chapter focuses on the artist-consultant (two cases, Artists Placement Group & Ocean Earth) and unpacks the spatial and embodied nature of the corporate language that they use. The third chapter surveys contemporary cases of artists working in this field, and describes the ambiguity and ambivalence with which they operate. These three chapters will progressively bring the reader, chronologically and topically, to an understanding of current projects in this field, and (hopefully) pragmatic thinking about their potential. The thesis functions as an analysis of artistic undertakings as well as positioning statement for the author, as ambi_
Thesis (S.M. in Art, Culture and Technology)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Architecture, 2013.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 82-85).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Architecture.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology