There is a nexus between artist, curator, and audience.
The curator becomes part of the art as they decide how and when to present the artwork.
There are two different models on how the artist-audience relationship will develop, depending on if the museum shows the art appreciation model, or the cultural insight model. I personally believe the cultural insight model is a better interaction between artist and viewer because it means that the viewer has to really think about the art and draw knowledge out of the culture the piece was created in to understand it.
Another part of the process is that the audience must not be searching for aesthetic beauty when looking at an art piece because that is hardly relevant when it comes to artistic excellence.
Once we can move past that part, the audience may be ready for a transformative experience in which viewing the art may change the way we think and act and shed light on social justice. The work of Whitney Biennial in 1993 was a feminist piece that is not meant for women to admire themselves, but to understand how women are really treated and thought about in our society and how we can change that and make it better. That is what makes something artistically relevant.
It is also appropriate to look at when beauty is necessary and appropriate. In times of loss and mourning, there is something right about beauty fitting into the equation. Beauty may be able to turn absolute sadness into a more peaceful experience. The combination of beauty and pain that is so right helps many people feel a transformation from one stage of grief to the next and feel a release. Beauty from sadness creates a community of understanding and togetherness.
Art is a way for the artist to represent themself and express themself. Art is a way for audiences to understand themselves.
The leading cultural agents of this montage are Whitney Biennial, the Elegies, Daniel Martinez, the Rodney King tapes, and Phillip Gust. Through the process of understanding what excellent art is/isn’t and forming a relationship between artist and audience, the world is able to evolve into a shifting relationship between teacher and student, as with artist and audience.
In a way, the audience themselves are the art because humanity is a large inspiration for art. The artist expresses themselves through the art, and the audience learns about themselves through the artist’s art.