From the lab to the factory:Bridging creators and industry


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“From the Lab to the Factory: Bridging creators and industry”

Ruth Pagès, Gemma San Cornelio, Antoni Roig

Universitat Oberta de Catalunya


In recent years, and especially under the current economic crisis, there is an ever growing trend to urgently promote innovation. This, in its turn, fosters interest in creativity and the spring of diverse kinds of relationships between industry and artists. The labour conditions of such relations could be regarded through the lens of the definition of “creative class” (Florida 2002), yet some other authors have highlighted its deep degrees of precariousness (Terranova 2005; Lazzarato 1996, 2008; McRobbie 2001, 2004). Regarding the conceptual level of such relations, on the one hand, it can be discerned that romantic concepts of the artist-as-genius and of creativity persist, linked to the vision of the artist as an agent of change, divergent thinking, or fresh air into industry –which seem much needed for innovation purposes and for the sake of economic success. On the other hand, some artists claim for a redefinition of their very role, similar to that of the researcher, valuing their own methodology as an asset. Such redefinition is being proposed due to their transdisciplinary activity that overcomes the boundaries of the traditional Art World moving into the science, technology or industry fields.

Moreover, this context varies depending on territories (country or region), and its own conception of cultural or creative industries, and consequently the policies applied. The research we present is trying to trace the relationships established between these independent creators and the industry through some specific initiatives based in the Spanish territory. The cases selected: ‘Talent Factory’, belonging to Fundació Digitalent (Barcelona) and ‘Disonancias’ (San Sebastian and Barcelona) bridge both sides of the coin. The aim is to examine both structural information regarding how these collaborative relationships are established in terms of authoring, contracts and labour conditions, while relating them to the changes and evolutions regarding the very concepts of talent, creativity, artist or innovation.

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From the lab to the factory:Bridging creators and industry

  1. 1. From the Lab to the Factory: Bridging creators and industry ATACD, Barcelona, 2009
  2. 2. UOC, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya Ruth Pagès, Gemma SanCornelio, Antoni Roig Project AE&NM
  3. 3. ART + INDUSTRY (Starting thesis) Need for growth Creativity as Innovation Collaboration Art & Industry Need for growth Creativity as Innovation Collaboration Art & Industry
  4. 4. Relationships between art and industry <ul><li>structure of such relationships </li></ul><ul><li>concepts underlying such relationships </li></ul><ul><li>study case : Disonancias </li></ul>index
  5. 5. <ul><li>Creative industries </li></ul><ul><li>Creative Class </li></ul><ul><li>Work conditions </li></ul><ul><li>Creativity </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation </li></ul><ul><li>Disonancias </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Structure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Concepts </li></ul></ul>STRUCTURE CONCEPTS STUDY CASE 1 2 3
  6. 6. CREATIVITY <ul><li>originality (novelty, uniqueness) </li></ul><ul><li>effectivity </li></ul><ul><li>non-conventional personality </li></ul>Runco, 2007
  7. 7. CREATIVITY 'building or producing something from nothing' Boden, 1994 Mistery!!! Romantic inspiration
  8. 8. CREATIVITY Sternberg & O'Hara, 2005 <ul><li>Price to be paid </li></ul><ul><li>Self-destruction </li></ul><ul><li>Faustic pact </li></ul><ul><li>Risks and resignations </li></ul>
  9. 9. INNOVATION ‘ Creative Destruction’ Schumpeter 1950 Essential to capitalism New businesses Old ones destroy
  10. 10. CREATIVITY Like stock Investment (Sternberg, O'Hara & Lubart 1997) Entrepreneur risk!!! Buy low Sell high and…
  11. 11. (Hartley 2005:5) CREATIVE INDUSTRIES ‘ The conceptual and practical convergence of the creative arts (individual talent) with the cultural industries (mass scale)’
  12. 12. <ul><li>Ruled by business model </li></ul><ul><li>End with ‘something for nothing’ </li></ul><ul><li>Arts must give in return </li></ul>Creative industries policies DCMS (UK) 90’
  13. 13. CREATIVE CLASS <ul><li>centrality of creativity in the economy </li></ul><ul><li>scientists, engineers, architects, academics, artists, musicians ... </li></ul><ul><li>wealthy and influential professionals </li></ul>(Florida 2002)
  14. 14. <ul><li>Flexibility </li></ul><ul><li>Mobility </li></ul><ul><li>Free-lance work </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple jobs </li></ul><ul><li>Precarity </li></ul><ul><li>Risk tolerant </li></ul><ul><li>Lottery format </li></ul>Work conditions Lazzaratto 1996 McRobbie 2009 Ross 2009
  15. 15. CONCEPTS STUDY CASE Institutes and Universities INSTITUTES MODEL Mediation between Art and Industry MEDIATORS MODEL 1 2 3 Residence programs MEDIA LAB MODEL
  16. 16. Study case
  17. 17. DISONANCIAS <ul><li>Grupo Xabide + local governments </li></ul><ul><li>Connect artists with companies </li></ul><ul><li>Divergentes 2005 (too artistic!) </li></ul><ul><li>Now artists don’t do autonomous artistic projects  Work on industry’s demands </li></ul><ul><li>4 editions / 40 projects+ </li></ul>
  18. 19. CONDITIONS OF THE COLLABORATION Companies are choosen Call for Artists Alliance begins
  19. 20. CONDITIONS OF THE COLLABORATION <ul><li>9 month alliance (virtual + physical stay of 20 days minimum) </li></ul><ul><li>Joint meetings at the beginning </li></ul><ul><li>Joint meetings at the end </li></ul><ul><li>(Spanish tour) </li></ul>
  20. 21. CONDITIONS OF THE COLLABORATION <ul><li>Committed to society </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative, multidisciplinary, international vision, hybrid process of research </li></ul><ul><li>Target: Prototype/idea responds to the needs of the company </li></ul><ul><li>10,000 to 12,000€ (fees for work) </li></ul>Call for artists
  21. 22. CONDITIONS OF THE COLLABORATION <ul><li>Non-commercial, share alike: CC </li></ul><ul><li>Exclusive granting to company - remuneration to artist at fixed rate </li></ul><ul><li>Exclusive granting to company - remuneration to artist proportional to exploitation income </li></ul><ul><li>Exclusive granting to company - except transformation. No remuneration </li></ul>Exploitation rights Choosen by the company
  22. 23. CONCEPTS <ul><li>Methodology meetings + audits… </li></ul>methods
  23. 24. methods
  24. 25. CONCEPTS <ul><li>Systematizing creativity </li></ul><ul><li>From non-useful to profitable </li></ul><ul><li>Reminder of… UK policies for Creative Industries </li></ul>methods
  25. 26. CONCEPTS <ul><li>Not the mythical bohemian any more </li></ul><ul><li>Technical training, team work, new materials, flexible environments… </li></ul><ul><li>BUT- </li></ul><ul><li>‘ thinks out of the box’, ‘comes with unconventional ideas’, ‘breaks our frame of mind’ </li></ul><ul><li>Disonance </li></ul>Artist as Researcher
  26. 27. DIGITALENT <ul><li>Stereotypes of the artist: unstructured, uncommercial, not able to materialize ideas… </li></ul><ul><li>Talented people as ‘outsiders’ (romantic view) </li></ul><ul><li>Talent is lost if not integrated in the industry logic </li></ul>
  28. 29. Thank you!