Theme “One more time, let's do it again!” – Trond Lossius, Editor of VIS Issue 5

The OECD Frascati Manual defines five criteria that all research and development work must meet. The fifth of these is that the activity must be "transferable and/or reproducible" [1]. Reproducibility has revealed itself to be thornier than previously perceived, and the last decade has seen something of a "reproducibility crisis" in several scientific disciplines [2]. This crisis also extends to the humanities [3].

There are reasons to question whether it is legitimate to deploy such scientifically-oriented research concepts in artistic research [4]. Taking the interpretation of classical music repertoire as an example, is it at all meaningful to consider this highly individualised activity in relation to scientific ideas of replication? Do not musical interpretations instead negotiate an artistic field of tensions and possibilities between remaining ‘true to tradition’ and ‘breaking new ground’, between respecting the intentions of past artists and craving space for interpretative freedom, always resulting in something new?

Rather than engaging with the question of reproducibility, VIS Issue #5 will reflect on what "doing it again" may lead to in artistic research. Doing something again is integral to many artistic practices. The performing arts require rehearsal (répétition in French). Once adequately rehearsed, performances are commonly given several times over [5]. Other artists engage with a series of works, or revisit a motif, topic or question over and over again. Works of art may benefit from "a second chance", not least in artistic research. Repetitions might be the result of deliberate choices or emerge as recurrences within the practice [6]. Artists may "do again" within their own practice or engage with the work of others through reading, restaging, referencing, reproducing, appropriating, reusing, sampling, or re-enacting [7].

Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt suggest that "repetition is a form of change" [8]. What insights may emerge by doing something again and again, repeatedly, over a long period? How may artistic research draw upon and benefit from such iterations? We invite expositions of artistic research where "doing it again" is of importance, and we invite contributors to expose the artistic research questions, contexts, practices and outcomes in which repetition manifests itself, reflecting upon how "doing it again" may contribute to practice, to research, insights and to knowledge production.

(The title for this call cites the lyrics from a song by Röyksopp and Robyn [9].)

[1] OECD. (2015). Frascati Manual 2015. Guidelines for collecting and reporting data on research and experimental development. The measurement of scientific, technological and innovation activities. Paris: OECD Publishing, p. 45.
[2] Baker, M. (2016). 1,500 scientists lift the lid on reproducibility. Nature, 533(7604), 452–454. https://doi.org/10.1038/533452a
[3] Peels, R., & Bouter, L. (2018). The possibility and desirability of replication in the humanities. Palgrave Communications, 4(1), 95. https://doi.org/10.1057/s41599-018-0149-x
[4] Ruiten, S. van, Wilson, M., & Borgdorff, H. (Eds.). (2013). SHARE: Handbook for artistic research education (Amsterdam, ELIA), p. 25.
[5] Crispin, Darla, Hultqvist, Anders and Lagerström, Cecilia (Eds). (2016). Repetitions and Reneges, PARSE Journal, 3, 7-11 (Gothenburg, University of Gothenburg). https://parsejournal.com/article/introduction-to-repetitions-and-reneges/
[6] Bandlien, B. Å. (2019). PhD-project: Recurrences - a method and practice within dance and choreography (2016-). Retrieved 15 December 2019, from PhD-project: Recurrences -a method and practice within dance and choreography (2016-) website: https://khioda.khio.no/khio-xmlui/handle/11250/2425899
[7] Refer to the topic of VIS Issue #3 History Now.
[8] Eno, B., & Schmidt, P. (2001). Oblique Strategies. Over one hundred worthwhile dilemmas (5th ed.) [Deck of cards].
[9] Berge, S., Brundtland, T., & Robyn. (2014). Do it again. Arts & Crafts. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=btBSxtKzF6Q