In the last 10 years or so collaborative art practices have moved in to the mainstream of cultural production, and collaboration is now largely taken for granted as one of the numerous ways that artists can choose to operate. Despite this, artistic collaboration still raises some interesting and crucial questions about the nature of authorship, authenticity and the artists’ relationships to their works & audiences that inevitably disrupts the persistent and popular image of the artist as a ‘heroic’ solitary figure. While some collaborations have come from a reaction against political and cultural regimes, there are numerous other artists who have chosen to work together as a positive choice for collaboration. Common to most if not all collaborative practices though, is an implicit critique of the idea of the artist as a figure that stands outside of society engaged in an internal singular dialogue.
Collabarts.org was established in December 2005 as a resource and platform for artists, theorists and art students setting out to offer a source of information, dissemination and discussion about collaborative art practice. The site hosts a number of commissioned essays and interviews including some important published and as yet unpublished essays on collaboration that have been generously contributed to the site by their writers. There are also a large number of links to relevant articles and artists’ websites. In addition the timeline for collaborative art practice sets out to place artistic collaboration in a historical perspective in relation to cultural and political events.
The site is an ongoing project that will be edited and revised with contributions from visitors and the writers involved. We therefore look forward to any suggestions that you may have.