CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Earlier this summer, Austin Peay State University associate professor of art Mark John DeYoung traveled to the Netherlands to host an innovative, collaborative design event called “Inside Out.” The new exhibit, which attracted more than 300 participants, inverted the traditional concept of an exhibition by inviting the public to participate in a “do-it-yourself” period of installation.
The Electron Cultural Foundation in the city of Breda invited DeYoung to host “Inside Out” in The Netherlands in June. For more than two weeks, international and national designers and artists, as well as community members, used locally acquired and reclaimed materials to create a public installation.
“Enabling community members to become participants is a fun way to encourage everyone to creativity and can serve as a catalyst to further dialogue, not only on art and design, but on what issues we, as a society, should be concerned about,” DeYoung said.
The goal of the project was to create a participatory environment, conducive to social exchange and cultural enrichment, as well as the exchange of ideas. The event undermines the traditional distinction between maker and viewer, artist and amateur, democratizing and valuing the making of things, DeYoung said.
“Breda is a well-known city in the world of design, including the Graphic Design Museum, the Graphic Design Festival Breda in addition to Electron, so it makes sense for a project like this – one that extends the boundaries and notions of ‘what design is’ – should take place here,” DeYoung said.
He was able to bring “Inside Out” to Breda thanks to an APSU Summer Research Fellowship grant. For more information on this installation, contact DeYoung at firstname.lastname@example.org.