November 9, 2018

To Dream Avant-Garde at Hammond Harkins Galleries @ Hyperallergic

COLUMBUS, Ohio — There are at least two schools of thought around notions of the avant-garde. One defines it narrowly as linked to the period of modernism in contemporary art, from the late 19th century into the mid-20th century, while another associates it more broadly by the earmark of vanguardism — that is to say, a tendency to push the cultural status quo. Put another way: one version casts the avant-garde as a fixed canon, to which entry is permanently closed. The other considers it a kind of ongoing party, which any like-minded and counter-cultural artist may join.

As a number of the artists participating in To Dream Avant-Garde, curated by Alteronce Gumby at Hammond Harkins Galleries, are engaged in rather exciting and extremely current practices, we can assume the avant-garde in this case represents the latter view, rather than the former. The show includes work by young guns like Aaron Fowler and Tariku Shiferaw, as well as that of long-established practitioners like Faith Ringgold, who grew up in Harlem on the heels of the Harlem Renaissance — the centennial of which is being celebrated citywide in Columbus this year. To Dream Avant-Garde is Hammond Harkins’s piece of dedicated programming within I, Too Sing America: The Harlem Renaissance at 100, and unsurprisingly, every featured artist and participant is reflective of the collective flourishing of artists of color in the mainstream, due in part to the influence of that movement.

Read more here…

What It Mean to Dream Avant-Garde

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