Ken Friedmann was born in 1949 in Connecticut, USA. He was a prominent member of the Fluxus movement, and wrote and edited some of the most important publications of the movement.
His artistic work is based around Fluxus events, scores, lectures, writing and their academic work. Alongside this, his involvement with mail-art, or as he sometimes refers to it – communication art, was crucial for the dissemination of ideas associated with Fluxus. His 1966 International Contact List of the Arts, was a network of over 5000 names.
Friedman’s focus is art as a social function, art enhances one’s life. Therefore, he looks at the significance of process and exploration, art as part of human culture, and social exchange.
Friedman was head of Fluxus West, one of the four branches of Fluxus, which were established by George Maciunas, and served to better propagate the ideas and works of the movement. The branch established in 1966, was located in San Diego, and later moved to San Francisco, and then Friedmann created a “fluxmobile“, a mobile headquarters – “traveling center for exhibitions and festivals”, by purchasing a Volkswagen bus.
In later years he worked in academia, as a professor, institute director, and a dean, and he is currently a University Distinguished Professor at Swinburne University, Melbourne, and Chair Professor of Design Innovation Studies at Tongji University, Shanghai. Friedman is an Editor-in-Chief of She Ji: The Journal of Design, Economics, and Innovation.