Les organisations et le travail artistiques sont-ils contrôlables ?



November-December 1997, n°86, pp.77-113

Departments: Accounting & Management Control

The definition of art inherited from the Romantic era implies that « true » art must be totally free and exclusively in its own service. All forms of constraint and control are therefore seen as destructive. Yet art today is increasingly produced in a relationship with organizations and in a collective context which necessarily produces certain forms of control. The author has therefore tried here both to define this control and the forms of art at the centre of the accusation that control could kill art, and to identify the forms of control at play in the most innovative productions which are also, « a priori », the most hostile areas to any form of constraint. Four sources of control are distinguished: self-control, control by romantic ideology, control through a gift and control by an adhocratic body. The paradox is that these four sources of control, which break away from traditional management, are today part of the reflection of the most modern management. It seems very likely that this will affect artists' historical reservations vis-à-vis management