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View of “Rasheed Araeen: A Retrospective,” 2017–2018. Wall, from left: Sonay Ke Chirya (Golden Bird), 1986; Mon St V, 1985. Floor: Once Upon a Time, 1994. Photo: Peter Cox.

Rasheed Araeen

Van Abbemuseum

View of “Rasheed Araeen: A Retrospective,” 2017–2018. Wall, from left: Sonay Ke Chirya (Golden Bird), 1986; Mon St V, 1985. Floor: Once Upon a Time, 1994. Photo: Peter Cox.

“THIS IS A UNIQUE STORY. It is a story that has never been told,” wrote artist and pedagogue Rasheed Araeen in his catalogue essay for the 1989 exhibition “The Other Story: Afro-Asian Artists in Post-War Britain” at London’s Hayward Gallery. The exhibition, encompassing works by the Indian painter Francis Newton Souza, Filipino artist David Medalla, and Chinese photographer Li Yuan-chia, marked a watershed moment for Asian and African artists. Along with the Centre Pompidou’s “Magiciens de la terre” (Magicians of the World) of the same year, it facilitated the entry of non-Western artists into “mainstream” venues, instigating a broader turn toward “global art.” This led to some recognition for African and Asian practitioners—just enough that British art historian Julian Stallabrass controversially claimed, in his Art Incorporated (2004), that “non-white artists” should “start

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