Researching the Arts Lab


Research into the Arts Lab and the ideas it embodied was conducted through a number of methods. The project team agreed from the outset that an experimental, multi-disciplinary endeavour such as the Arts Lab warranted an equally experimental and multi-faceted approach to research and dissemination. In all, five forms of research and dissemination were developed for Squaring the Circle:

Desk research


Cultural Probes

Critical Responders

Symposium event

Each aspect of the research built, incrementally, on the previous one: desk research revealed names of some of the key organisers in the Arts Lab; the researchers sought out people like Jim Haynes, who in the course of a two day interview, suggested other Arts Lab participants to make contact with.

Cultural Probes were developed after a period of dissemination, during which the project team examined both desk research and interview transcripts to identify key themes, questions and challenges that continue to hold relevance for experimental arts practices.

Likewise, the project team made contact with four professionals and academics from disparate disciplines, requesting their participation in the project as critical responders. Finally, this research was presented during a Squaring the Circle symposium for an invited group of artists, arts and culture professionals and academics, each of whom had been selected based on their interests or intersections with experimental arts practice.