Conventional social-scientific research accounts of doing research are often structured along the same lines (observation, theoretical approach, assumptions, methods, empirical data, discussion of results). Also, they typically present ‘explanatory understandings’ of the research (Weber 1978). It is in the process of validation by the scientific community, that the value of the research will be challenged or confirmed. On the other side, an artist will often refuse to provide an explanation of his/her own work. By offering an account of the ‘complex of meaning’ (ibid.), s/he would risk closure for the work. The artistic field organizes validating differently: a curator will – usually independently from the artist – offer an explanatory understanding. As soon as the curator has spoken the explanation inhabits the work, and every subsequent critique will enrich and enable the circulation of the work. Given these differences, the established but contradictory practices of validating in the social sciences and in the arts need reconsidering in the context of research collaborations.