Art, Architecture, and Processes of Public Engagement

By Lora Senechal Carney and Mark G. Chilton.

Published by The Arts Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Considering how local participants may be engaged in urban projects, we discovered that Alsop Architects, a contemporary British architectural firm with a philosophy of “collective creativity,” and Park Fiction, a very recent public art initiative in Hamburg, Germany, share strategies of participation to a remarkable degree. We offer a brief summary of the emerging tendencies in architecture and public art within which this coincidental sharing has occurred, and of the highlights both of a major project by Alsop and of the Park Fiction project. We consider and draw conclusions about the parallels between the processes of engagement used by Alsop and Park Fiction, and end by analyzing a model project carried out in a workshop at the February 2007 International Symposium on the Arts in Society which served as a way to explore these processes further.

Keywords: Architecture, Public Art, Public Space, Contemporary Architecture, Reception, Community, Urban, Engagement, Social Inclusion

The International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp.105-114. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.483MB).

Prof. Lora Senechal Carney

Associate Professor, Visual and Performing Arts , Department of Humanities, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

From her position as an art historian in an interdisciplinary Visual and Performing Arts group at the University of Toronto, Lora Senechal Carney teaches and writes about modern and contemporary North American and European visual art in social and political contexts. Her current focus is on collaborative and interventionist public art.

Mark G. Chilton

Intern Architect, SMC Alsop Architects, Toronto, ON, Canada

Mark Chilton practices architecture in the Toronto studio of internationally recognized British-based architects, SMC Alsop. With degrees in design theory and an ongoing involvement in Toronto's activist communities, Mark takes both a theoretical and a practical approach to the discipline. Complementing his work in architecture, Mark also engages in idea-driven clothing projects.

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