The Society for Artistic Research (SAR) was established in March 2010 as an independent, non-profit organisation for the purpose of publishing the Journal for Artistic Research (JAR). It is a dynamic, international group that is encouraging discussion and activity dedicated to artistic research. SAR is comprised of both individual and institutional members from around the globe, who support SAR through the payment of a membership fee, sponsorship, and the gifting of their time and expertise.
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The JAR review process
All expositions in JAR are peer reviewed (except those in our inaugural issue 0). The steps of this process after the reception of a submission are:
1. Assessment by the Editorial Board
The Editorial Board assesses if the submission meets the basic requirements to be passed to review (see submissions) and may suggest some changes before doing so.
2. Invitation of Reviewers
The Editorial Board invites at least three reviewers for the submission, approaching experts from disciplinary fields of the submission, including artistic, scientific and scholarly disciplines. The author(s) may propose one of the three reviewers. JAR expects the reviewers to engage critically and supportively with the field of artistic research.
JAR employs a 'single blind' review process. The reviewers are anonymous until publication; while the names of the authors are announced. In the art field, a 'double blind' review process can be seen as particularly inappropriate, as the research often carries the ‘signature’ of those who conducted it.
Peer-reviewers are asked to use the JAR Peer Review Form to report on their assessment. The form can be downloaded here.
3. Decision on the basis of reviews
Having received the reviews, the Editorial Board decides whether the submission is:
If a submission is accepted, the reviewers are asked to compile a final set of comments based on the re-worked submission. These comments are then published alongside the submission as ‘JAR Reviewer Comments’ and linked to from the JAR table of contents.
We continue to debate what peer review entails in the context of JAR. We believe that research can be assessed, while at the same time we recognize that artistic research work is, by its nature, an open undertaking, resisting overly rigid regulations. JAR itself is work-in-progress. The emerging community of artistic researchers will learn and define through practice what it means to expose artistic research.
If the submission is accepted, it will be published in one of the next issues of JAR.
Points of attention for reviewing JAR submissions
Note: This is work in progress. Reviewing criteria are suggestions that allow the probing of an exposition in particular ways without being prescriptive.
1. Which aspects of the submission are of interest / relevance and why?
JAR seeks submissions that address important issues or problems in an artistic manner that engages others in the field. When answering this question, please take into account the submission’s subject matter, its methods, outcomes or any other aspect that you deem important.
2. Does the submission live up to its potential?
Please reflect on the potential of the submission and the way it is realised. How might the submission be improved to better match its potential?
3. How does the submission expose practice as research?
JAR is open to submissions from various methodological backgrounds, as long as they expose practice as research. By this we mean that the submission exposes, translates, stages, performs etc. the practice it presents so as to engage with its own meaning, to challenge existing epistemic horizons or to offer new insights.
Please take into account:
Ultimately, a submission may successfully expose practice as research despite disappointing conventional academic criteria for the assessment of research. If applicable, please state where the breaching of such criteria is detrimental to the submission.
4. How well do design and navigation support the submission?
Design and navigation should support the proposition. Its reception should make sense and not frustrate (in the case that ‘frustration’ is not deemed an important element of the submission).
JAR does not operate with a minimum or maximum word count because, as a rich-media publication, we could technically accept an exposition without words. But, as a guide, we advise that a reader/viewer should be able to explore the main part of the exposition and understand the research in approximately one hour.
Reviewing for JAR
JAR has a growing database of reviewers who generously agree to contribute their time and points of view aiding us in our aim to publish and debate artistic research. The journal welcomes the interest of possible reviewers from all disciplines, whether operating inside or outside the academic context. Contact us (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you feel you can help us in this important role.
Can different forms of dialogue influence the way we learn and think? This was the question that Amber Yared and Heather Davis set out to explore. Drawing upon examples from radical education, we were interested in how dialogic form changes the way we approach a topic and the different kinds of knowledge that it might produce. To experiment with this question, we engaged with three different forms of dialogue: interview, conversation, and metalogue – a style of dialogue where the form mirrors the content – which we engaged performatively in various forums. In the final iteration, we set up a booth where people could come and discuss education in one of these dialogic modes. To explore creative and democratic approaches to education, this project investigates the relation of form to content.
This exposition concerns the relationship between art and research. It focuses on the questions: How can we define knowledge and research in the context of artistic research? What is artistic research? What is its goal? How is it different from other traditions of combining art and research? How should the university system react to and make use of artistic research? What is artistic knowledge and how is it used? How can we justify art as a special, flexible form of research? In what sense is art a philosophical and political practice – not just a way of communicating philosophical and political ideas and reasoning, but an especially powerful and holistic form of philosophy and politics?
The first half of the exposition analyses and develops a line of reasoning about these concepts and categories. It also includes an attempt to justify art as philosophy/politics. The second half of the exposition lists the five main traditions of combining art and research and the pros and cons of each of them.
The latter half of the exposition, in particular, uses images, videos, and music as examples of these traditions, and in some way as proof of the philosophical/political claim of the exposition. The whole exposition is built concretely from the viewpoint of a practicing artist, looking for insights and ways that could help him and other artists in their artistic work.
The Invisible Inside the Visible was a personal quest turned art project to locate physical evidence of a century-old racetrack on the Cape John peninsula in the village of River John, Nova Scotia.
The journey to find the racetrack was marked by its double invisibility. Not only was it remembered without specificity in regard to location, it was also invisible to the observing eye because it was embedded into the landscape.
This exposition is a reflection on the nature of landscape as a marker of cultural geography, and on my ability as an artist to pull the past forward through performance. I see the performative gesture as a physical articulation akin to a vibration; it disrupts the stability of the narrative. This project adds to the discourse investigating maps, memory, rural community, oral history, depictions of landscape, performance as tool, and the potential for dialectical articulations of place and history.
This is a report of an art-research project that started over four years ago. It concerns drawings made by a chimpanzee as part of a scientific experiment conducted in the 1940s. On the first page I summarise the background to my project, the discussion of drawing that provides a context, and the areas of enquiry that are exposed. On three further pages of the exposition I discuss the methods by which I conducted the research. 'Collecting' describes the acquisition of second-hand books dating from the first half of the twentieth century. In 'Tracing' I discuss the retracing of drawings made by the chimpanzee named Alpha. The third of these pages, 'Experimenting', shows the development of this research during an artist's residency at MEANTIME in 2012.
This exposition considers movement intervention in architectural spaces as a form of artistic practice and potential research methodology. Examples of movement intervention within architecture in contemporary artworks are examined, helping to describe the parameters of this technique. Phenomenological aspects of these artworks, such as kinaesthetic empathy and the ubiquitous and physical context of architecture, are discussed. These can distance the viewer from an automatic understanding of the relationship between body and building, and introduce the potential for meaning beyond familiar ways of addressing architecture, such as through writing.
The exposition centres on two on-site movement interventions by the author at post-war British buildings, St Peter’s Seminary, designed by Gillespie, Kidd and Coia, and the tower housing blocks Bevin Court and the Sivill House, designed by Berthold Lubetkin, and examines how the works relate to these contexts as a space both of creation and of reception. These movement interventions address the similar cultural circumstances of these sites as well as their dissimilar current status. The exposition concludes with an assessment of the validity of the kinetic human body as a research tool and the capacity for artworks resulting from movement intervention to engage the viewer and contribute to existing architectural discourse.
The Research Catalogue (RC) is a searchable, documentary database of artistic research work and its exposition. The RC is an inclusive, open-ended, bottom-up research tool that supports the journal's academic contributions.