Although our social life and industrial production is heavily depending on collaboration and multi-dimensional participation, many art lovers still expect the artist working alone in his or her studio and being solely engaged in all processes. This romantic model is not even valid for most of the art that has been made in the workshops of the old masters, and yet the idea of the ascetic artist is the reason for certain expectations towards artworks.
Since the second half of the 20th century, through movements like Arte Povera, New Realism, Conceptual Art and Minimal Art, participatory approaches and collaborative practices have gained a strong place between the various fields of contemporary art. Fluxus, Happening and Performance Art have add to interdisciplinary and interactive strategies a strong social awareness by installing environments, in which the artist together with the audience creates process oriented works that are socio-political engaged. Back then, communication processes and social interaction became the main concepts for creating highly creative and intellectual processes, in which alternative models of a humanist togetherness can be imagined and proposed.
During the 1990’s, the ongoing interest of a younger generation of artists in developing socio-political works that matter and that are concretely involved in changing the matrix of our post-postmodern world, has given the art scene a new field of contemporary art practice with a relational aesthetic. This term was brought up by Nicholas Bourriaud for describing art that is based on human relations and social contexts. Since then, participation and collaboration have become main concepts in the production, exhibition and mediation of contemporary Western art.
In Turkey though, it seems like this important way of today’s art practice is still of minor interest. Nevertheless, since the mid of the 1990’s, there are also artists in our art scene that are dealing with socio-political matters in collaborative manners, and Plato Sanat’s current exhibition Come On! presents seven important representatives. With the help of the exceptional oeuvres of Sarkis, Esra Ersen, Oda Projesi, Can Altay, Burak Delier, Güneş Terkol as well as Isıl Eğrikavuk and Jozef Erçevik Amado, the show gives an insight in this way of contemporary art practice by displaying a selection of iconic pieces. At the same time, Come On! is a research-based exhibition that reflects on the current state of our art scene, and underlines the need for collaborative work today.