while checking for palesitian art residencies, I bumped into october art gallery and the term Transvanguarde art, together with a promise of its bright future – together with exhibitions of transvanguarde masters of 2012 & 2013.
Really? Are they onto type error art and forgot a T? Are they referring to a re-use of transavantguarde? That was a “trans” of beyond avantguarde art..
The october gallery’s one is a trans of crossing and moving in between..
According to this very short blog entry: “..the transvangarde can perhaps best be described as an ongoing multi-cultural experiment in the visual arts that can only be understood in the context of a globally active – and consciously interactive – contemporary art scene without borders or boundaries.” (And the blog’s name is african art..)
Fine words.. However, perhaps am too sceptic(??) that am failing to perceive something(??), the label (transvanguarde), its usage and the objects/artefacts seem to me very culturally specific – they all seem of capitalistic culture. I guess it depends on certain definitions, which are shifty, however why do we have to buy into a geographic based cultural definitions? In a sense, if indeed this is an “experiment” as the blurb says, or a sort of “movement”, that rejects geographical base cultural and artistic definitions, maybe the socio-economic critical cultural approach to this is precisely what’s appropriate and respectful of the transvanguade’s proponent’s intents?
The african art’s short blog post that basically seem to try and direct me to a book about transvanguarde artists, appears suspiciously like a sales pitch to me. Beyond the question of wrongness, or otherwise, of attempting to sell stuff, am simply attempting to describe here what IT IS, in my mind – not whether its X or Y on a wrong/right scale.
One element though is not enough for me, we need to cross, to trans even for some realisations that perhaps have some grounding.. (just like finding stuff in libraries..)
So.. check the october art gallery website.. Check the terms and usage of images.. The minimal images approach, that supposed to make me feel as if there is something out in the gallery to visit – just because the gallery imposes some degree of scarcity, seems very capitalistic in its culture. The attempt to glorify, both in terms of words and scarcity, the transvanguarde art, artists and objects, appears to me suspiciously like art linked proponents in the 80’s that tried to prepare, manufacture and sell art trends and movements. That, again, seems to me part and parcel of capitalistic culture where the ideology of financial, numerical, and power gains, seem to be the kind of practices that are venerated, celebrated and cultivated..
True, this is not exactly my culture. Or it might be argued that I’d like it not to be my culture, yet it is the culture I know..
However, am not trying here to down-play capitalistic cultural practices, just highlight that the trans in transvanguarde art linked objects – might not cross much.. Not if we try to look at it from its own terms.. Event the avant-guarde reference in the name, seems for me to be a link to a vey specific culture of art history. A history that is based on and within capitalism, yes the very capitalism some avatguarde movements wanted to reject – however, this is a singular culture.. Indeed, without the singularity, the very metaphor and militaristic reference of avant guarde – is meaningless..
The idea of crossing and transing though is very evocative for me.. Transing rhythmically rather than geographically..