Emerging from the live performances and spectacles of Dada and Surrealism, Happenings were events created by artists in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Allan Kaprow coined the term when he used it in the title of his 1959 work 18 Happenings in 6 Parts, which called for the audience to carry out specific actions in an environment he staged. Happenings were the forerunners of performance art, in which the focus shifted away from audience participation and increasingly toward the actions of the artist.

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