Collaborative means to work together, or in conjunction with another, to engage in united labour

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  • Gilbert & George, 'Fates' 2005
    Gilbert & George
    Fates 2005
    Mixed media
    image: 4260 x 7600 mm
    Purchased with assistance from Tate Members 2006© Gilbert and George
  • Tracey Emin, Sarah Lucas, 'The Last Night of the Shop 3.7.93' 1993
    Tracey Emin, Sarah Lucas
    The Last Night of the Shop 3.7.93 1993
    Fabric and paper badges
    support: 1515 x 1350 mm
    Presented by the Factual Nonsense Trust and the family of Joshua Compston in memory of Joshua Compston 2000© Tracey Emin & Sarah Lucas
  • Jake Chapman, Dinos Chapman, 'Exquisite Corpse' 2000
    Jake Chapman, Dinos Chapman
    Exquisite Corpse 2000
    Etching on paper
    image: 228 x 78 mm
    Purchased 2000
    © Jake and Dinos Chapman
  • Peter Fischli, David Weiss, 'Untitled (Tate)' 1992-2000
    Peter Fischli, David Weiss
    Untitled (Tate) 1992-2000
    Polythene foam, acrylic paint
    display dimensions variable
    Purchased with assistance from Tate Members, Tate International Council and the Art Fund 2007© Peter Fischli and David Weiss, courtesy Matthew Marks Gallery, New York

The most common way for artists to collaborate is with other artists. Duos like Marina Abramović and ULAY created works that relied on mutual dependency. Other artists collaborate with individuals from different skill backgrounds like musicians, scientists, or with a wider community.

Collaborative practices gained momentum in the 1960s when artists began questioning the idea of the artist as the sole creator. When artists collaborate they are intentionally blurring the boundaries of individual effort and ego and this can have an impact on the reception of the work of art, and sometimes its financial status as it makes attribution difficult.

Collaborative practices also suggest a paradigm shift in contemporary art production, because the process of making can sometimes be the work itself.