Community Art

Yesterday, franscud commented on my post saying that we, as a society, as artists, have moved away from communal art. While it might look that way to the casual observer, I don’t really think it’s so… communal art has just gone underground. Or, more accurately, it’s taken to the Internet.

At one time, I participated in so many art-related Yahoo groups that I lost count (but it was more than 30). Most of them were geared towards rubber stamping. There were groups for making (and exchanging) greeting cards, artist trading cards, and pretty much anything else that could be stamped. Some of those groups had round robins, where each participant would start off the piece of art then pass it on to the next until all the participants had added to the art and everyone had their own starting piece back. Some of the group projects involved everyone creating something on a theme and sharing with the group.

My favorite was a Puzzle Challenge. Each participant purchased a child’s board puzzle. We were put into groups of 12 (because the puzzles had 12 pieces). We’d then each mail a puzzle piece to all of our group members. The participants then created little puzzle piece-shaped pieces of art based on the stated theme of the original puzzle owner and mailed them back to the person holding the puzzle board. My theme (surprise, surprise) was Rainbow. As you can see from the photo (go ahead and click on it to see it in all its glory), my co-conspirators were a clever and talented bunch of women!

I really enjoy the participatory and sharing aspects of this kind of art. If I had the time, I could definitely envision some co-creationist communal art sessions.

And no, I don’t remember which piece was mine!