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Expectations on artistic intervention: An investigation of self-conceptions, practices, and receptions


Freie Universität Berlin
Department of Political and Social Sciences
Institute of Sociology

Principal Investigator:
Jan 01, 2022 — Dec 31, 2025

Project B03 within CRC 1512 "Intervening Arts"

Participating Institutions: Freie Universität Berlin, Europa-Universität Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Leuphana Universität Lüneburg, Universität der Künste Berlin

Speaker: Prof. Dr. Jürgen Brokoff, Freie Universität Berlin

The project examines the expectations associated with artistic practices as regards to the potential of the arts as a driver for social transformation. We are also interested in how such artistic interventions are perceived by different audiences. We typically see these practices as located in-between art as political expression (e.g. theater and activist art) and artistic strategies in politics (e.g. activism and protest). Our assumption is that in these social fields, different logics of artistic practice (the “poetics of intervention”) take effect and interlace. Another assumption is that expectations regarding the impact of artistic intervention are central to artistic self-understanding. Our research focuses on three key areas. First, we use ethnographic methods to investigate the production of selected, event-based interventions of various art forms. Second, we examine the reception and interpretation of these interventions by different audiences. Finally, we seek to make an empirically informed, theoretical contribution to a field-theoretical understanding of artistic intervention.