SAIC has published a series of four volumes that explore the work of Chicago artists and thinkers, from the 20th century to today, whose practices directly engage with the social sphere. The series came out of SAIC’s 2014 exhibition, A Proximity of Consciousness: Art and Social Action, and its accompanying programming.
The project, featured in Public Art Review’s most recent issue, is described as an “ongoing exploration of how art can change society.” Rain Taxi reviewed the books, Immersive Life Practices and System Networks, providing context for the project by way of examples of social practice in Chicago. It also discusses the issues and challenges that arise with this approach to artistic production, most notably when it comes to funding. The San Francisco Book Review reviewed Art Against the Law, a series of interviews and essays that explore the artist’s role in resisting inequality, injustice, and established biases.
The Chicago Social Practice History Series is distributed by the University of Chicago Press and was edited by the Executive Director of the Department of Exhibitions and Exhibition Studies Mary Jane Jacob and Director of Exhibitions and Associate Curator Kate Zeller (MA 2008).