Artmaking as Entrepreneurship

Effectuation and Emancipation in Artwork Formation


  • Adrienne Callander University of Arkansas



 In this article, I assess how the improvisational and collective models of organizing known as effectuation (Sarasvathy 2001) and emancipation (Rindova, Barry and Ketchen 2009) apply to the making of socially engaged artwork. This case study focuses on the entrepreneurial nature of art-making exemplified by FOOD (1971), a collaborative work initiated by Gordon Matta-Clark and Carol Goodden and made possible by a host of co-creators throughout its three-year run. This article explores the motives and means that generated this work and argues that under certain conditions, an artwork functions in distinctly entrepreneurial ways. I also argue that the case of FOOD demonstrates how entrepreneurship can be central to artwork formation. Specifically, the processes involved in structuring a socially engaged artwork rely on the effectual principles of affordable loss, strategic alliance, exploitation of contingencies, and control of an unpredictable future, as well as the emancipatory principles of seeking autonomy, authoring, and making declarations. This article also introduces the term “artwork formation” to tether effectuation and emancipation to the continuous formation of socially engaged artwork. By recognizing the entrepreneurial process as an aspect of socially engaged art-making, I seek to invite discussion on the connection between artistic production and entrepreneurship and to support the validity of entrepreneurship in creative pedagogy and practice.

Author Biography

Adrienne Callander, University of Arkansas

Adrienne Callander is an Assistant Professor of Art and Entrepreneurship at the University of Arkansas, cross-appointed in the School of Art (Studio) and the College of Business (Strategy, Entrepreneurship, and Venture Innovation). Callander teaches art and entrepreneurship, facilitates integration, and partners with on- and off-campus entities to grow opportunities for engagement. She has exhibited her work in the US and abroad and has presented nationally and internationally on the intersection of Art, Entrepreneurship, and Social Practice.

Callander received her MFA from the Mason Gross School of Art at Rutgers University, her Post-Baccalaureate in Visual Art from the Maryland Institute College of Art, and her BA in History from Reed College.




How to Cite

Callander, A. (2019). Artmaking as Entrepreneurship: Effectuation and Emancipation in Artwork Formation. Artivate: A Journal of Entrepreneurship in the Arts, 8(2), 61–78.




Most read articles by the same author(s)