Thursday, November 27, 2008

Art Reports on Thanksgiving!

There are many things to write about, but my schoolwork has got most of my time; I hope to get them done by next week and get back to a normal pace in my life. The Egungun: Diaspora Recycling, An Art Exposition of Transformation & Border Crossings exhibition is going well; the labels are almost done and the posters were printed and distributed in all libraries in the University of Texas at Austin. The installation will be on December 2nd and the opening will be on December 5th. I hope to write more about the exhibition. I will put the exhibition’s poster up here on my next post: It is an enigmatic poster and I like you to see it.

In case you are wondering what else I am working on: I am thinking a lot about the notion of Avant-garde lately. I am working on a paper about surrealist magazines in 40’s in New York and the issue of Avant-garde comes up a lot. I will explain more later; Avant-garde is interesting enough to keep me wondering for most part of this semester. Of course, looking at Avant-garde in Cinema (what I did a lot in my undergrad years) compare to Avant-garde in Fine Arts is different in many ways but at the same time it has significant similarities, which is hard to dismiss.

Any way it is that time of year again, so: Happy Thanksgiving!

A Colorful Day, Hearst Castle, San Simeon CA, Fall 2008

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Particles of Dust

I thought I saw you in my dream:
I dreamt of dreaming about you.

It was all in my vacant imagination,
An empty pot of dreams of dreams,
Like particles of dust on an old feather duster !

Both dust and feather duster are there,
In the Britannica Encyclopedia,
Everything is there in that encyclopedia, but my dreams!

My dreams are particles of dust on an old feather duster
They fly away every time there is motion in the air of my mind
Every time you come closer!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

More on DAM

DAM; Denver Art Museum:

It has been two weeks since my trip to Denver. The core of this trip was my visit to the African Art gallery in Denver Art Museum.*

The inspiration behind this trip was an exhibition we are putting together at the end of this semester, for a course taught by Professor Moyo Okediji, called Museums and African Art: Case of Egungun Masquerade.** Since the exhibition covers both contemporary and historic art pieces, I decided to visit the Denver Art Museum, which not only has one of the richest galleries of African Art (historic) but also it covers a wide range of contemporary art by African and African American artists.

Before coming to UT at Austin, Moyo Okediji was a professor of visual arts at the University of Colorado at Denver and assistant curator of African, African American, and Oceanic arts at the Denver Art Museum. In his class we explore different accounts of the Western approaches towards the study of African Art and the display of African art in museums. The great part of the problem in the study of African Art is embedded in the underlying arrogance as well as ignorance of Western historians, art historians and anthropologists towards cultures unknown to them.***

The exhibition is called Egungun: Diaspora Recycling, An Art Exposition of Transformation & Border Crossings. The exhibition will be on view in the Fine Arts Library at University of Texas at Austin. I will post more information about this exhibition as soon as the formal invitation is out.

Denver Art Museum, Hamilton Building, Daniel Libeskind,
Photo date October 2008

Untitled (Atlas), Fred Wilson, 1992, Denver Art Museum

Detail, Fred Wilson 1992 work, photo date October 2008

* General admission for the Denver Art Museum is $13 for adults,$3 for youth (6 –18) – made me feel Old –, it is free for kids under 6, and the student ticket costs $8.

** Egungun Masquerade is on of many forms of masquerade performances in Yoruba land.

*** The label of “African Art” that is presented, as a unified entity here is also an issue: unfortunately we rarely distinguish the Art of Africa by the name of its country, like Nigerian art, etc.

PS. Esha Momeni was released. Read more on For Esha.