Commons • Art is envisioned as a platform that facilitates and supports the creative and social caretaking of art as a way of generating new commons. Commons • Art aims to offer artworks or art projects with a set of toolkits and support mechanisms for their use and maintenance. By sharing authorship as much as increasing the social and affect value of art, Commons • Art would lead to an art economy that opens up to society at large.
By devising digital technologies and other social instruments, Commons • Art strives to create a new sustainable economic and maintenance model of art; a third model in addition to production (creating new artworks) and preservation (keeping artworks in their initial condition), which nurtures a kind of art to be lived with  and perhaps even change in everyday life and social fabric towards a commoning society.
Commons • Art responds to an existing paradox: while any substantial social impact requires long-term collective engagement, art can only participate in the closed, short-term economy of the “art world.” This economy is fueled by unique artist profiles, a constant chain of new productions, and perpetuated by the reticent modus operandi of institutions and funders. Meanwhile, pre-colonial culture has shown how art can be well-maintained and practiced by a community over generations while serving them.

On the Commons • Art platform, artists will be connected with caretakers from within and beyond the field of art. Caretakers are change-seeking or socially caring initiatives and initiators who find artworks/projects on the platform for future use, care and maintenance. The toolkit – including recipes, artist licenses, and forms of reporting – will guide caretakers to deploy art for different daily and social purposes in sustainable, joyful and imaginative ways.
By distributing the resources based on digital technology like the decentralized mechanism of NFTs and DAOs, communities sit at the table of discourse with artists, institutions, funders and policymakers. Commons • Art’s sustainable economic and maintenance model of art  provides a constructive proposal to recalibrate the power structures within art and beyond. 

Commons • Art is initiated and led by artist/system designer Yin Aiwen and curator/director of Casco Art Institute Binna Choi in 2019, and founded by Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons and Documenta Institute in 2022. With support from a wide network of like-minded organizations, initiatives and critical friends, Commons • Art converges many people’s thinking trajectories and lifetime pursuits, and aspires to become a robust support system of taking care of art, art practitioners and communities at large, contributing to commoning societies.

The current phase of Commons • Art is made possible in partnership with Contemporary Commoning and with curatorial and editorial support by Rosa Paardenkooper.