Speculative Strategies in Interdisciplinary Arts Practice


edited by 

Jane CalowDaniel Hinchcliffe 
Laura Mansfield

This new publication is unusual in its mission to scrutinise the methods, motives, practices and terms associated with interdisciplinary arts today. Speculative Strategies in Interdisciplinary Arts Practice, intervenes at a critical moment for those who work across disciplines, art forms and theoretical perspectives. Amid global economic turmoil, many contributors are unflinching in their political standpoint on the current state of the arts in contemporary western society, and the political potential of interdisciplinarity as a tool with which to question dominant power structures and their conventionally received categorisations of knowledge. The book brings together specially written chapters by contributors from a range of disciplines including visual arts, performance, dance, architecture, communication design and sociology. Many of the authors’ analyses employ vivid accounts of arts projects accompanied by full colour images. 

Edited by Jane Calow, Daniel Hinchcliffe and Laura Mansfield, this 156 page volume with 46 full colour images is published by Underwing Press.

Chapters are grouped around three compelling themes related to Interdisciplinary Arts Practice:
  • Pleasure and Fear
Interdisciplinarity can offer the excitement of working in uncharted waters, the sheer pleasure in latent, incredible, buoying creativity – a ‘what if’? But ‘what if’ carries the capacity of summoning unwanted, uncomfortable experience…

  • Mutuality and Collaboration
Like ‘interdisciplinarity’, the term ‘collaboration’ is frequently used with little reflection or analysis. Here contributors deliver unsentimental, analytical consideration of the conditions of their respective grounded practices.

  • Ethics and the Politics of Negotiation
At a time when many arts practices can be deemed to have problematised social and ethical conditions of artistic production to such a degree that art can seem immobilised or just irrelevant, it seems appropriate to think the possibility of a simultaneous ‘working through’ of ethics and arts practices.

The book will be of particular interest to artists, designers, academics, students, curators and producers.


Brave New Alps (Bianca Elzenbaumer and Fabio Franz), Carol Brown, Jane Calow, Daniel Hinchcliffe, Laura Mansfield, Mike Pearson, Jane Rendell, Victor Jeleniewski Seidler, Becky Shaw and Jane Trowell. 

Design by Daniel Russell and Textbook Studio

Click preview to see sample book pages.

There was a seminar to launch Speculative Strategies in Interdisciplinary Arts Practice, at the Birmingham School of Art, Birmingham City University.

Book Price: £17.64 plus p&p

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