Artist Collectives: History, Organization, and Politics PhD Workshop
September 26-27th, 2013

Coordinated by
Stevphen Shukaitis, Centre for Work, Organization, and Society, University of Essex
Alan W. Moore, ABC No Rio / Colab / Squatting Europe -- awm13579 [at]

Artists work in groups. These contingent collective formations change shape according to the necessities of artists’ lives. Collective process then is a key question in political and economic organization, facilitating autonomy from the art system and resistance to dominant market mechanisms. Despite the commonsense understanding of artists as independent entrepreneurs, the economy of artistic production does not conform to the model of most kinds of business. Artistic production is supported by a mixed economy of which the market for commodity art is only part. While the organizational structure of artistic work in groups has not been much studied, this workshop engages with the question of collectivity among artists. Working collectively is about making a living. But modalities of collectivity are also a prime concern of those who want to remake the world, to join the great issues of the day, and to find a reason to work at all.

Expanded Proposal / Description of the Workshop
Overall Questions & Themes for Discussion
Reading List

Thursday September 26 @ First Site, Colchester
Friday September 27, Drift in London

More information / background
Art Spaces Archives Project
Groups & Space
Art Gangs
Minor Compositions

A.W. Moore comments on readings:
on Art Gangs chapters and...
AWM's text for May 2013 Workers' Inquiry conference, "Art Workers Want to Know"
AWM reflects on some more readings, and Grant Kester, etc.

Slidecast called "Essex Coda"; this presentation discusses some recent artists' collectives in NYC, the USA, and Europe. (Sorry audio goes out of synch pretty fast; couldn't fix it.)
This concerns Colin De Land, Art Club 2000, Bernadette Corporation, Bruce High Quality Foundation, Deitch Projects, Dearraindrop, Paper Rad, "Locally Localized Gravity" show at Philadelphia ICA, Red 76, LTTR, Basekamp's "Plausible Art Worlds," "Descent to Revolution" show at Columbus, OH, "DSLR" Chicago, "Interventionists" at Mass MOCA, Interference Archive, Swoon, Mark Dion & Surrealist Research Bureau, Claire Fontaine, Chto Delat, Robby Herbst, Temporary Services, and Paul Ryan's "threeing"

I didn't prepare the short "Art Gangs" presentation for this website. But James Kalm videotaped my book release talk at Bluestockings which is not bad. It's in 4 parts on YouTube:
"Alan W. Moore talks about Art Gangs at BLUESTOCKINGS Part I"