Norwegian version

Art and Society

This is an interdisciplinary research group which focuses on how aesthetics and the arts may intervene in the ways we live in and think about society.

The group brings together researchers from a broad variety of disciplines within the visual and performing arts, the social sciences and the humanities. These include, but are not limited to, urban studies, technology, cultural heritage, sustainability research, art therapy, art didactics and dissemination, theatre, design and philosophy.

The main activities of the group are oriented around exploring, evaluating and discussing the possibilities, roles and functions of aesthetics and arts in a variety of societal contexts. The aim is to develop inter- and transdisciplinary forms of knowledge production, modes of working and research networks in response to both global societal challenges and local concerns. Key here is to cement the importance of the arts in forming societal imaginaries and in materially making and shaping landscapes, lives and communities.

Head of research group

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  • Members

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    • More about the research

      The group name Art and Society points towards various intersections between the arts and society, focusing specifically on the wider societal relevance of artistic and aesthetic competence. As a group, we posit that:

      1. We care about how people perceive, sense and experience the world and arts and aesthetics are good at helping us access that
      2. We want to emphasise the many sensuous and embodied ways of knowing and doing that exist in addition to instrumental, scientific and technical ways of knowing, and the arts and aesthetics play key roles here
      3. Arts and aesthetics are good at engaging with the complexity of society – science is sometimes less good at the „messy“ things
      4. Arts and aestheics can help us engage with publics as collaborators and assemble stakeholders around research issues
      5. Arts and aesthetics can intervene and connect us with other humans, non-humans, society, the everyday, and the environment in different ways