"A Very Short Critique of Relational Aesthetics"
by Radical Culture Research Collective (RCRC)
Nicolas Bourriaud’s Relational Aesthetics (Les presses du réel, 1998; English translation 2002) undeniably has been an effective generator of debate. In the wake of critical responses by Claire Bishop (in October in 2004 and Artforum in 2006) Grant Kester (in Conversation Pieces, 2004, and in Artforum in 2006), Stewart Martin (in Third Text in 2007) and Julian Stallabrass (in Art Incorporated, 2004), the strengths and limits of Bourriaud’s book will be no secret. Our remarks at this point will not be new, but we think it may still be helpful to formulate some critical propositions with a sharper political orientation.