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Another Artworld


The unequal development of art markets, lack of transparency of cash flows and various financial irregularities, precarious work and a high unemployment rate of artists are just some of the striking phenomena and ways in which contemporary art reproduces inequalities that can be seen in other areas of social action. The visual arts have become a key terrain in the field of culture in which market-oriented processes of globalization are manifested.

In this field, only a few auction houses (London and New York) occupy a prominent position. Shifting the orientation of the field toward business, speculators have taken the position of key players in the art market, creating a money-making machine from art. As a consequence of the concentration of wealth and influence in a neoliberal global society, culture and the arts become the exclusive right of privileged actors. Therefore, the function and status of artists and art in contemporary society are moving away from the mission of fulfilling the public interest. These phenomena are increasingly the subject of research, so it can be said that the greatest challenge and major task is to find solutions to the democratization of the artworld.

For whom?

We invite empirical, theoretical and practice-informed contributions from across a range of disciplines (art theory, cultural studies, cultural management, and cultural policy, sociology of art and economics of culture, and other related fields). Proposals could be in a form of individual or group papers, full panel presentations, testimonials, video presentations or poster sessions that should contribute to the consideration of the principles and models of decentralized (horizontal) management in visual arts; models based on equity, cooperative relationships and self-governance, ie. the implementation of direct democracy, which implies direct decision-making on all the common issues in the field of contemporary visual art.

Topics may include, but need not be confined to, the following:​

  • Defining and recognizing socially progressive models of organization and management in the field of contemporary visual arts based on the principles of equity, democracy, egalitarianism…;
  • Case studies of successful and unsuccessful, historical and current examples of democratization of the field of contemporary visual arts;
  • Achieving decentralization and democratic approach in the field of contemporary visual arts through cultural policy principles and bottom-up practices;
  • Analysis of the impact that different organizational models can have on the position of the artist, the value and function of the work of art, the development of artistic production, encouraging citizens’ participation in cultural life and decision-making processes;
  • Policies of participatory practices, collective work, and self-organization in other artistic fields and cultural practice.

How to apply?

Proposals should be submitted to no later than September 30th, 2020. To facilitate the submission process please consider the submission guidelines.

​Submissions will be evaluated by the scientific committee of the conference. Notification of acceptance will be sent before October 25th, 2020. Accepted abstracts proposals will be clustered together in panels. The submission of full papers and their dissemination to conference participants is optional for the authors. 

All authors who have presented their work at the conference are invited to send their full papers to be considered for publishing in the Book of Proceedings (with ISBN) by February 20th 2021.

Important note: Since one part of the conference program will be organized online, it is possible to apply for the paper presentation via online communication channels (Zoom platform).

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