This classic sociological examination of art as collective action explores the cooperative network of suppliers, performers, dealers, critics, and consumers who—along with the artist—"produce" a work of art. Howard S. Becker looks at the conventions essential to this operation and, prospectively, at the extent to which art is shaped by this collective activity. The book is thoroughly illustrated and updated with a new dialogue between Becker and eminent French sociologist Alain Pessin about the extended social system in which art is created, and with a new preface in which the author talks about his own process in creating this influential work.
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Page from a set of Shokunine depictions of various
Art Worlds and Collective Activity
occupations Edo Period Japan artist poet and calligrapher unknown
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academic art aesthetic aestheticians analysis appreciate art world participants canonical art choices chromatic scale collective action composers constraints contemporary conventional craft create critics culture dance dealers defined develop distribution system effect exhibit exist experience figure film galleries idea important industrial innovations instance institutional integrated professionals interest involved jazz John Cage judgments kind large number less Ludwig van Beethoven Marcel Duchamp Marilyn Levine materials mavericks medium ment Moulin museums musicians naive artists objects organization painters painting patrons performance Perlis photog photographers play players political possible practice printed problem produce publishers quilts recording reputations require response result Robert Arneson Robert Frank rock music scores sculpture Simon Rodia skill social society sociology someone standards stereographs style support personnel theater theory things tion tional tradition understand visual art Watts Towers