Conference presentation Bilbao, 11 January 2018

On Thursday 11 January 2018 Janneke Wesseling will give a key lecture at the Subjectivity in practice-based artistic research conference at the University of the Basque Country in Bilbao, Spain. The conference is organised as part of a larger programme ''laSIA - sujeto, investigación, arte'' (subject, research, art) subsidised by the University of the Basque Country. The goal of this project is to explore the research dimension of artistic practice. See the project website for more information.

In her conference presentation ''Artists and Academia'', Wesseling focuses on the the position of artists in academia, which is by no means self-evident. How do artists do research and why would it be called research? How does their research relate to academia? Wesseling will discuss dilemmas and outcomes of artistic research by means of two completed PhD trajectories in artistic research, of artists Lilo Nein and Ruchama Noorda. Other key speakers are Mika Elo, professor in Artistic Research at the University of Arts of Helsinki, and Mafe Moscoso, interdisciplinary reseacher and artist.


Kickoff Critical Making research project

The newly launched NWO funded research project ‘Bridging art, design and technology through Critical Making’ aims to interrogate Critical Making by experimentally applying it to a broad range of artistic practices. The project will investigate to what extent Critical Making can serve as a comprehensive concept for design, technology, education and activism intersecting with critical contemporary art practices and artistic research. The consortium received a half million euros grant for the project from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) as part of the research programme Smart Culture – Art and Culture.

About the consortium
In this project, main applicant Prof. Dr. Janneke Wesseling (Leiden University) and co-applicant Dr. Florian Cramer (Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences) have joined forces with Klaas Kuitenbrouwer (researcher and programme developer Digital Culture at Het Nieuwe Instituut), Lucas Evers (leading Waag Society’s Open Wetlab and Open Design Lab) and Marie-José Sondeijker (director of West Den Haag). In addition, designer, researcher and Hackers & Designers co-founder Anja Groten and media artist, researcher and educator Shailoh Phillips have recently joined the team as PhD candidate and junior researcher respectively. Candidates for two other positions will be recruited in early 2018.

The consortium will organize a series of Critical Making workshops with art and design students and teachers in several Dutch art schools, including Willem de Kooning Academy Rotterdam and the Royal Academy of Art (KABK) in The Hague. Furthermore, various public presentations, a national and an international symposium will be organized. At the end of the project, the project outcomes will be disseminated through a peer-reviewed, open access, hybrid paper and electronic book. If you would like to stay informed about these developments and the programme, please send an email to info@phdarts.eu or visit the project website at www.criticalmaking.nl.


Wat nu, Koetsier? symposium presentation, 4 November 2017

On Saturday 4 November 2017 Janneke Wesseling will give a presentation in the context of a two-day public programme in honour of the Dutch conceptual artist Hans Koetsier.

In the spirit of Koetsier, 45 graphic designers and artists were invited to design their own ‘advertisement’, to induce a contemporary work or statement that manifests the force of communication.

After being published in Het Parool and on watnukoetsier.nl, the series will now be presented during the Wat nu, Koetsier? exhibition, symposium, and publication launch, on 4-5 November 2017, 12h00-18h00, on De Ruijterkade 127, Amsterdam

The exhibition will be in constant transformation, adapting to the presentations of Erik Kessels, Janneke Wesseling, Maria Barnas, Delphine Bedel, and Jouke Kleerebezem, who all made a personal selection from the series, and wrote about the project for the special broadsheet publication.

Saturday 4 November
12h00 opening
14h00 introduction to Wat nu, Koetsier?
15h00 Erik Kessels
16h00 Janneke Wesseling
18h00 closing

Sunday 5 November
12h00 opening
14h00 Maria Barnas
15h00 Delphine Bedel
16h00 Jouke Kleerebezem
18h00 closing

For more information, please visit watnukoetsier.nl.
All presentations will be recorded for future viewing online.


Lecture Studium Generale TU/e, 12 October 2017

On Thursday 12 October 2017 Janneke Wesseling will give a lecture as part of the Studium Generale Programme at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e).

Lecture State of the ART
Thursday 12 October 2017
12h40 – 13h35
Eindhoven University of Technology
Blauwe Zaal Auditorium

Like science, art can be a high-quality form of research. Similar to the scientific process, the artistic process sometimes is a struggle that leads to surprising and unexpected results, providing new insights into the world we live in. Contemporary society wrongly expects art to provide solutions to societal issues and to be economically profitable. This is a trend that closely resembles the contemporary societal attitude towards science. In her lecture State of the ART, Wesseling will argue that art can only flourish when it is free from demands of profit and of concrete results or solutions.

Free admission
To be sure of a place, we advise you to make a reservation.
For reservations click here.


Symposium on art criticism

For more information about the programme and how to apply: www.rug.nl/let/symposium-kunstkritiek.


English paperback The Perfect Spectator out now

The Perfect Spectator. The experience of the art work and reception aesthetics.
By Janneke Wesseling
Published by Valiz, Vis-à-vis serie
Design: Sam de Groot

Following the publication of Wesseling’s De Volmaakte Beschouwer (Dutch e-book) in 2015, the English translation of the book is now available in paperback form.

What happens between a spectator and an art work? How do we experience ‘meaning’ in an art work? How can the process of interpretation be understood and articulated?

To address these questions, the author explores the field of reception aesthetics, with its central premise that the contemplation of art is a matter of interaction between the art work and the observer. The research is focused on unravelling and problematising the theoretical terminology of the interaction between art work and spectator, deriving from reception aesthetics as well as from hermeneutics and phenomenology, with the aim of building a new theoretical foundation for this terminology. Additionally, different concepts of spectatorship are extensively discussed.

”I believe it is more productive to research how the art work works or signifies than what it shows or might signify. This ‘how’ reveals itself mainly in the performative act of experiencing the work.”

This book addresses scholars and students in the fields of art history, aesthetics and visual and cultural studies, as well as artists and art students, and all those art spectators who wish to develop a deeper understanding of the experience of art.

English paperback: order now at Valiz
ISBN 978-90-808185-0-7
EUR 25,00


NWO grant for Critical Making project

On 1 March, a research consortium headed by Janneke Wesseling was awarded a 500.000 euros NWO grant for the project ‘Bridging art, design and technology through Critical Making’. The grant allows the applicants to realize a four year research trajectory which aims at furthering the discourse of Critical Making. Under the supervision of the senior researchers affiliated with the institutes involved, a PhD candidate and three junior researchers will work on four subprojects and will be stationed at one or several consortium partners. Artistic research is the methodological starting point. A call for proposals will be published in April 2017.

The grant is part of the research programme Smart Culture – Art and Culture, one of the research programmes within the topsector Creative Industries. The programme supports projects that make connections between concrete innovative art and cultural practices and more comprehensive academic and social issues.

The Critical Making NL consortium consists of Leiden University (Academy of Creative and Performing Arts), Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences (Willem de Kooning Academy, Creating 010), Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam, Waag Society in Amsterdam and West Den Haag. In 2016, the consortium has already been awarded a Creative Industries – KIEM grant for their project entitled ‘Critical Making as a model for art practice in the digital age’. In this context, several public events will be organized in the next few months. If you would like to stay informed about these developments and the programme, please send an email to info@phdarts.eu.