Conceptualism in Latin American Art: Didactics of Liberation (Joe R. and Teresa Lozana Long Series in Latin American and Latino Art and Culture (Paperback))

Conceptualism in Latin American Art: Didactics of Liberation (Joe R. and Teresa Lozana Long Series in Latin American and Latino Art and Culture (Paperback))

Luis Camnitzer

Language: English

Pages: 364

ISBN: 029271629X

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Conceptualism played a different role in Latin American art during the 1960s and 1970s than in Europe and the United States, where conceptualist artists predominantly sought to challenge the primacy of the art object and art institutions, as well as the commercialization of art. Latin American artists turned to conceptualism as a vehicle for radically questioning the very nature of art itself, as well as art's role in responding to societal needs and crises in conjunction with politics, poetry, and pedagogy. Because of this distinctive agenda, Latin American conceptualism must be viewed and understood in its own right, not as a derivative of Euroamerican models.

In this book, one of Latin America's foremost conceptualist artists, Luis Camnitzer, offers a firsthand account of conceptualism in Latin American art. Placing the evolution of conceptualism within the history Latin America, he explores conceptualism as a strategy, rather than a style, in Latin American culture. He shows how the roots of conceptualism reach back to the early nineteenth century in the work of Símon Rodríguez, Símon Bolívar's tutor. Camnitzer then follows conceptualism to the point where art crossed into politics, as with the Argentinian group Tucumán arde in 1968, and where politics crossed into art, as with the Tupamaro movement in Uruguay during the 1960s and early 1970s. Camnitzer concludes by investigating how, after 1970, conceptualist manifestations returned to the fold of more conventional art and describes some of the consequences that followed when art evolved from being a political tool to become what is known as "political art."

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artists—Joseph Kosuth, Lawrence Weiner, Sol LeWitt, Hans Haacke, and others—and certain important European satellites. The premise is fine as a means of bringing to light hitherto neglected works, but the studious avoidance of the traditional history and figures becomes annoying. As threatening as this clarification between “conceptual art” and “conceptualism” may be to U.S. views and beliefs, without it, the use of either term creates serious distortions. The use of “conceptual art” as a blanket

Espartaco, founded in 1959 and led by Argentine painter Ricardo Carpani (1930–1997). Espartaco tried to create a figuration that was a militant alternative to Soviet socialist realism, sort of a Trotskyite socialist realism as opposed to a Stalinist one. The artists used distortion of the figures with some indigenous flavor and formal solutions inspired by Mexican muralist painting. They saw themselves as going out to the masses by painting murals in workers union buildings. Ferrari’s link made

most radical social intervention during the 1960s was the extreme abuse of power and use of violence by various Latin American states and other countries on the periphery. It was this form of political and social “rupture,” a rupture executed by those in power, that art and alternative pedagogy sought to resist. Every component of state power severed completely any connection to popular control in a process that continued into and climaxed in the seventies. Revising this development, in 1968,

in Brazil during the decades that followed his activities. E Waldemar Cordeiro Waldemar Cordeiro (1925–1973) came to Brazil from Italy in 1945. Involved with the Grupo Ruptura in Brazil, he both influenced and was connected with most of the art developments of the 1950s and 1960s, especially concrete art. In 1968, he became interested in working with computers. This was not out of any particular interest in technology, but as a result of theoretical speculations. As early as 1958 he had

respect for identity. That is why later the Italian Arte Povera (“poor art,” in the sense of lacking material resources) became attractive. I believe, however, that this sympathy for Arte Povera in Latin America was probably more a result of the name than of the work it produced. The label arrived before the works themselves, and when they did arrive, they seemed to contradict the label in several respects. The materials used by the Italian artists weren’t really that “poor,” and the name was

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