Hi! You’ve reached the homepage of Danny Butt. I am Associate Director (Research) at Victoria College of the Arts, University of Melbourne where I also coordinate the Honours programme in Social Practice and Community Engagement. In this programme I work with Tania Cañas, Beth Sometimes and Nuraini Juliastuti who teach us everything. This work builds upon a few years of teaching theory in the now discontinued Master of Arts and Community Practice, you can see my syllabus and download the readings for this teaching here.
I work with my dear friends in the Local Time collective. I wrote a paper about our practice in relation to theories of hospitality for the Journal of Artistic Research which may be the most useful thing I’ve written, though that’s more about the practice than the writing.
I’ve spent a decade researching the integration of art schools into the Anglophone university sector and why we now understand art as a form of research. My book Artistic Research in the Future Academy was published by Intellect / University of Chicago Press in 2017. See more on the website.
I have a long history of engagement with the work of Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, who is my main guide to the European tradition of philosophy and critique. I wrote a review essay on her book An Aesthetic Education in the Era of Globalisation for the Research Unit in Public Cultures working papers series that I hope will encourage you to read it. I also discuss the book in an unpublished essay on the film Born in Flames.
Rachel O’Reilly has taught me a lot about writing and thinking in our collaborative work on the contemporary politics of artistic infrastructure, which you can read in our essay “Infrastructures of Autonomy on the Professional Frontier: ‘Art and the Boycott of/as Art‘” for the Journal of Aesthetics and Protest.
Before academia, my professional career was in the new media field (covering everything from interaction design with Saatchi and Saatchi to internet governance for the United Nations Development Program), and I still try and understand the relationship between technological structure and cultural form: one recent piece that could be worth reading is on “Platforms and Public Participation” for Continuum.
I live, work and surf in the lands of the Boon Wurrung with my partner Ruth DeSouza, and we are in continual acknowledgement of our debt to this stolen territory and its customary owners, and the necessity to find ways to bring about a world that may restore sovereignty for them.
Do feel free to get in touch via the details below.
danny at dannybutt.net