Ethnographies of Co-Creation and Collaboration as Models of Creativity

Abstract (in English): 

The theme of my inquiry is how creative networked communities emerge in transnational and transcultural contexts, within a globalized and distributed communications environment. How do communities form and change through the collaborative activities of their members? How do members of these online communities come together to reinterpret and facilitate creativity?

I attempted to gain insights to these questions through ethnographic research with three creative communities that constitute and deploy themselves online and in physical space: Furtherfield, an artist-led online community and arts organization; Art is Open Source, the Italian artist duo of Salvatore Iaconesi and Oriana Persico, who develop ubiquitous publishing through cocreative practices; and Make-Shift, a cyberformance community represented by Helen Varley Jamieson and Paula Crutchlow. These three communities are closely interlinked. In fact, as I relate below, I happened upon the latter two by following leads and lines of collaboration opened to me through my work within Furtherfield. Furtherfield was my principal host, my fieldwork home, and the community I spent the most time with and which I managed to observe most closely and longest.

For this reason, this report, the first to emerge from my ethnographic fieldwork and before I have had the opportunity to analyze and theoretically contextualize my field evidence, focuses almost exclusively on Furtherfield, with only passing reference to Art is Open Source and Make-Shift.

(Source: Ethnographies of Co-Creation and Collaboration as Models of Creativity by Penny Travlou)

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Scott Rettberg