With the advent of Web 2.0 and social media, participation has become a ubiquitous aspect of our society. People desire and expect to be in meaningful dialogue with the products, media, entertainment, and services they use. Crowdsourced and participatory art—that is, creative projects where public contribution is essential—is a by-product of this zeitgeist.
All stripes of artists and designers—from graphic designers, activists, documentary filmmakers, musician, to museums exhibit designers, sculptors, painters, and architects—are innovating ways to include the public in the creative process.
This is a recent trend, so few resources exist for creatives eager to learn the methodology and best practices for understanding and creating these open socio-technical systems. This thesis is my exploration into this space. Through research, concepting, prototyping, and trial and error I have begun to develop my own approach, philosophy, and methodology of making participatory art. My hope is that this thesis can be of some help to other creatives interested in designing for public participation.