Numerous international exhibitions and biennials have borne witness to the range of contemporary art engaged with the everyday and its antecedents in the work of Surrealists, Situationists, the Fluxus group, and conceptual and feminist artists of the 1960s and 1970s. This art shows a recognition of ordinary dignity or the accidentally miraculous, an engagement with a new kind of anthropology, an immersion in the pleasures of popular culture, or a meditation on what happens when nothing happens. The celebration of the everyday has oppositional and dissident overtones, offering a voice to the silenced and proposing possibilities for change. This collection of writings by artists, theorists, and critics assembles for the first time a comprehensive anthology on the everyday in the world of contemporary art.
Lynn Hershman Leeson has been internationally acclaimed for her pioneering use of new technologies and her investigations of issues that are now recognized as key to the working of our society: identity in a time of consumerism, privacy in an era of surveillance, interfacing of humans and machines, and the relationship between real and virtual worlds. In 2007 a retrospective at the Whitworth Gallery in Manchester, Autonomous Agents, featured a comprehensive range—from the Roberta Breitmore videos from the 1980s and interactive installations that use the Internet and artificial intelligence software. Her influential early ventures into performance and photography are also featured in the current touring exhibition WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution, organized by the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art. Hershman Leeson is presently at work on a feature-length documentary about the revolutionary feminist art movement.