The Art of Participation

1950 to Now

The Art of Participation

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Microphones, 2008; courtesy the artist; © Rafael Lozano-Hemmer

The Art of Participation

Erwin Wurm, One Minute Sculptures (detail), 1997; thirty-two chromogenic prints; collection of the artist; photo: Kuzuyuki Matsumoto; © 2008 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VBK, Vienna

The Art of Participation

Lygia Clark, Diálogo: Óculos (Dialogue: Goggles), 1968; modified diving goggles, metal, and mirror; Clark Family Collection, Rio de Janeiro; photo: Eduardo Clark, courtesy "The World of Lygia Clark" Cultural Association; © 2008 "The World of Lygia Clark" Cultural Association

The Art of Participation

Jochen Gerz, The Gift, 2000; digital photography studio, production lab, digital pigment prints, and newspaper advertisements; installation view at Le Fresnoy, Studio National des Arts Contemporain, Tourcoing, France, 2000; photo: courtesy the artist; © 2008 Jochen Gerz and Artist Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst Bonn, Germany

The Art of Participation

Matthias Gommel, Delayed, 2002; installation view at Klangriffe Festival, Hochschule für Gestaltung Karlsruhe, 2003; courtesy the artist; photo: courtesy the artist; © 2008 Matthias Gommel

The Art of Participation

Abramović / Ulay, Imponderabilia (photographic documentation), 1977; performance at the Galleria Communale d'Arte, Bologna, Italy, 1977, courtesy the artist and Sean Kelly Gallery, New York; photo: Giovanna dal Magro; © 2008 Marina Abramović and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn, Germany

The Art of Participation

Francis Alÿs (in collaboration with Rafael Ortega), Re-enactments (video still), 2001; Courtesy the artist and David Zwirner Gallery, New York; photo: courtesy the artist; © 2008 Francis Alÿs

November 08, 2008 - February 08, 2009

Looking back nearly 60 years across a wide spectrum of genres and media, this exhibition examines how artists have engaged members of the public as essential collaborators in the art-making process. Works by more than 40 artists will be on view, from early performance and conceptual pieces by such pioneers as John Cage, Lygia Clark, Dan Graham, and Hans Haacke to contemporary projects by Jochen Gerz, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Lynn Hershman Leeson, and Erwin Wurm, among others. Encompassing restagings of historic installations as well as new commissions that invite your direct participation, the exhibition will change in form and content as you and other visitors contribute — either at the museum or online.


The Art of Participation: 1950 to Now is organized by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The exhibition is generously funded by The James Irvine Foundation and SFMOMA's Collectors Forum. Additional support is provided by Goethe-Institut San Francisco. Media support is provided by The Examiner and SFExaminer.com.

The James Irvine Foundation