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Decentralizing Conceptual Art's Internationalism: Latin American artists in Western Europe, 1968-1979

Project description

When conceptual art crosses borders

The spotlight is on Latin American artists who fled repressive political regimes in their countries and established themselves in Europe between 1968 and 1979. The EU-funded project COART-INT will study these transnational artists to understand the role of these expatriate artists and their influences in Europe and in the formulation of internationalism. The project will delve into issues of exile, locality versus internationality, mobility and the appearance of the concept of globality. It will base its findings on an analysis of data, oral history and artwork to define the new internationalism of contemporary art.


My proposed project problematizes Conceptual art’s internationalism and its historicization with an innovative study on transnational artists who expatriated from Latin American repressive political regimes to Europe, establishing themselves in Belgium, England and the Netherlands between 1968-1979. The objective is to assert these artists as agents of transcultural processes and their conceptual practices as operating within a dynamic matrix that is at once local and international, deterritorialized and rooted. Through an analysis of unique data collection, oral history and artworks this research aims to fundamentally revise the art historical canon by de-centering the major narrative of Conceptual art of the 1960s and 70s to comprehensively address the prominent roles these artists had on their adopted localities, a Latin American diasporic art world and the formulation of internationalism. By focusing on the interstitial spatial regimes these artists occupied and created, this research effectively redraws the discipline’s original topography and conventional analyses fixed within national paradigms towards a logic of transnationalism fueled by the mobility of agents, objects and practices. In the example of this project, a transnational methodology reassesses regional art histories — Belgian, Dutch, English and Latin American — to capture interregional flows and networks of production. Furthermore, it underscores a present condition in which geographical and cultural borders are increasingly more connected. The topic is timely in regards to the evolving understanding of Conceptual art. More specifically, the issues of exile, mobility, internationalism and localism that figure into this work offer a unique case study into Conceptual art’s role in driving and defining a “global” condition that is relevant today and more specifically art’s “global contemporary”, also referred to as “new internationalism of contemporary art.”



Net EU contribution
€ 281 358,72
Spui 21
1012WX Amsterdam

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West-Nederland Noord-Holland Groot-Amsterdam
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00