Global issues like climate change, public health and social justice require diverse, collective thought in order to materialise solutions, but the way to achieve this is less clear. Participatory art provides fertile ground for research into this topic, and can act as both laboratory and playground in the quest to harness collective methods. This paper explores discourse on participation from the disciplines of Performance Studies and Game Studies in order to develop an experimental framework for participatory art design. The mechanisms and methods mentioned were tested through practice-led research, which culminated in an experimental performance at ArtEZ University in May 2021. Defining participatory art as a form of simulation highlights the multiple roles played by artists of such works that differ from other artistic disciplines, such as designer, procedural author and facilitator. Key aspects of the design framework include ideating from core values, recognising multiple subjectivities within participants, and employing a collaborative approach to design through iterative feedback cycles. The framework can be used as a tool for both creation and critique, contributing to the dialogue about the politics embedded within participatory mechanisms.
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