The Cartography Project 2017
The Cartography Project was a year-long research project involving the documentation and archiving of participatory and socially-engaged art practices. The Cartography Project manifested across a series of events and workshops involving Danish participatory arts collective Superflex and numerous collaborative and socially-engaged art practitioners within both London and Liverpool. Participants collaboratively mapped the nodal points and historical accumulation of socially-engaged practices as it related directly to their own practice. Functioning as part of international exchange across the CAPP (Collaborative Arts Partnership Programme) research platform, and research partners: Horizon – University of Nottingham; University of Exeter and Tate’s own Digital Learning team – participants populated a continuously evolving and interactive networked structure with accounts of participatory practice as it related to them. Via The Cartography Project an interactive platform was produced that made it possible for participants to co-produce their history and to generate a public history of participatory practices within the contemporary art museum. This raised fundamental questions relating to the transition from ‘collaborative models’ to models of ‘co-creation’ and the ‘emerging’ nature of participatory knowledge generation. In creating/curating this history the platform of socially-engaged art practice became heightened in relation to the art museum and its rich, yet, under-acknowledged art history.