Barcelona

Ângela Ferreira, Maison Tropicale (Brazzaville) no. 2, 2007/2009, one of four color photographs, each 11 7⁄8 x 16 1⁄2".

“Modernologies”

Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona (MACBA)

Ângela Ferreira, Maison Tropicale (Brazzaville) no. 2, 2007/2009, one of four color photographs, each 11 7⁄8 x 16 1⁄2".

A SPECTER HAUNTS CONTEMPORARY ART—the specter of modernism. For some years now, artists and institutions have been invoking the disparate shades of the modern in terms that vary from the melancholic to the hortatory, from what sometimes seems a relapse into ruin aesthetics to the urgent call for a newly expanded, even universal, avant-garde. As an instance of the former we might adduce the ubiquity of work that treats of the architectural remains of modernism and the Eastern bloc; as an example of the latter, the renewed question of what comes “after” (surely a question-begging preposition) postmodernism. Those tendencies are often hard to tell apart, but in sum the urge seems to be to revisit the aesthetics and politics of the modern with a view as much (avowedly at least) to reanimating its radical possibilities as to mourning the dwindling forms, and forms of life, that it has

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