Pascal Gielen – Arts in Society – Culture – Sensitive Science

Pascal Gielen developed three thematic lines around which a range of writing, book, film and research projects are set up.

The first line Arts in Society examines the role of the arts in society. An interdisciplinary approach takes precedence, focusing both on the institutional context of the arts, such as cultural policy and organizational structures, and on the cultural, ecological, political and social role of the arts in society. Subjects such as community art, art education, art in public space, diversity, democracy, civil action, creative labor and cultural commons were discussed within this line of research and often resulted in editions in the Antennae-Arts in Society book series published by Valiz, Amsterdam ( Research funded by the Fund for Scientific Research, such as ‘Sustainable Creativity in the Post-Fordist City’ or by the European Commission such as ‘Cultural and Creative Spaces and Cities’, as well as research, writing and curatorial assignments such as ‘The Hybrid Artist’ (commissioned by AVANS), ‘The Art of Civil Action’, ‘Sensing Earth’ (both commissioned by the European Cultural Foundation), ‘The Constituent Museum’ (commissioned by M HKA) and ‘Common Sense’ (commissioned by the Flemish government) are part of this thematic line.

The second line Culture examines the importance and value of culture in society in a broader, often sociological sense. Research, writing and editing assignments such as ‘The Value of Culture’ (commissioned by the Flemish government and cultural policy centers), ‘No Culture, No Europe’ (commissioned by the European Cultural Foundation) and ‘The Civil Value of Socio-Cultural Acting’ (commissioned by Socius) fit within this thematic line.

A third line Sensitive Science has recently developed and is looking for a singular and tentative relationship to current events in society such as the financial crisis, government cutbacks, the corona crisis, the disappearance of urban free spaces, burn-out or war. Within this line, not only current social themes are addressed, but the writing and the form of publication itself are the subject of a quest. Opinion pieces are written within this line, film contributions are made and in the meantime the booklets ‘Nearness‘ and ‘Fragility‘ have been published.