- Current PhD student
- Arts & Humanities MPhil/PhD
Curatorial research envisioning an alternative networked arts’ ecosystem
Models of collaboration amongst art and the sciences have been widely discussed over the last fifty years. Yet, the arts’ subordination to the latter is nowadays overwhelmingly visible, particularly in Western societies' policy papers and educational strategies.
The boost towards STEM education and global initiatives as the Grand Challenges are symptomatic of the arts being excluded from debates regarding our society and civilization's future. Segregated to a ‘purposeless purpose’ to cite Kant, perceived as non-essential(1) or extracurricular. The arts’ public value and civic influence are downgraded to publics’ impact and box-ticking; subjugated to a ‘metric power’ (2) which demands tangible value for money, and it is used to propel competition in education, markets and the public domain.
Cornered by a neoliberal emphasis on individualism and modernist notions of the artist as genius, contemporary art professionals are often unable to articulate and uphold the need for artists’ practices outside the studio. Lost in translation amongst the semantics of intangible contextual values and post-Fordist production imperatives. The arts ecology, as made of people with multifaceted competencies, appears as a precarious and disjointed force whose values are hardly acknowledged beyond neoliberal market narratives. With institutions increasingly underfunded by governments (3) and arts’ professionals competing in opportunities like zero-sum games. In a condition of ‘extraterritorial reciprocity’(4) when approaching STEM debates and societal concerns, despite often embodying pluralistic values that can be deemed useful to society.
Through my practice-based research, experiments will be conducted to develop spaces for transdisciplinary creative collision and knowledge exchange. Harnessing the potential of Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) and cooperative methodologies to envision alternative socio-technical scenarios for an inclusive vision of the arts through the curatorial. Allowing organisational research to develop our own proto-field, opening up multi-dimensional and distributed spaces for possibilities via networked dynamics. Allowing primary research into arts as made of ‘fugitive occurrences’ (5), by identifying alternative value systems, nurturing P2P processes of exchange and cooperative organisational models.
The research aims at establishing models for developing digitally sophisticated networks of practices and peers, rethinking the arts' agency and long-term sustainability while suggesting nuanced approaches to multidimensional forms of value and transdisciplinary collaborative relationships.
- https://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/artists-the-most-non-essential-worker’ [accessed 15 April 2021].
- David Beer, Metric Power, Palgrave (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016).
- as demonstrated in: Belfiori, Eleonora, Firth Catriona and Jonathan Neelands, Enriching Britain: Culture, Creativity and Growth, The 2015 Report by the Warwick Commission on the Future of Cultural Value (University of Warwick: 2015), pp. 18-29
- Stephen Wrigt, Toward a Lexicon of Usership, (Eindovhen: Van Abbemuseum, 2013), pp. 13.
- Stephen Wrigt, Toward a Lexicon of Usership, p. 13.
School, Centre or Area
Area of expertise
More about Linda
Linda Rocco is a London-based contemporary art curator and PhD researcher with a LAHP/AHRC doctoral award. She is the creative consultant for Liberty at The Greater London Authority (GLA) and has curated public events and exhibitions internationally, with established small-scale institutions as Delfina Foundation and Goethe Institute London, to warehouse spaces like Yinka Shonibare’s Guest Projects, including the curation of the public sphere off and online.
Linda co-directs the not-for-profit organisation _inventory platform, which engages communities in urban and rural contexts through socially engaged projects since 2016. _inventory just received support from the Genesis Foundation and Bagri Foundation to produce a second iteration of Where I'm Coming From, a digital programme of transnational collaborations initiated in 2020.
Linda regularly works as curator for and with artists, and private galleries, as well as consulting for charities, foundations and public institutions on accessible and socially engaged arts; collaboration with STEM subjects as well as participatory and intermedia practices.
Her research interests orbit around alternative organisational models which recognise pluralistic values and experiences in cooperative and distributed ways; transdisciplinary experimentation and long-term cultural engagement; network culture and the blockchain.
Recent collaborations include: Danish Art Foundation, Ministry of Culture Taiwan, Pineapple Lab. – Philippines, Yinka Shonibare Foundation, Frieze Art Fair London, Unlimited, UK Antarctic Heritage Trust, Mansions of the Future, Laure Genillard Gallery London, ACE South East.