Nicolas Bourriaud on ‘Borders’

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About Borders

Contemporary culture can no longer be seen as a single totality, but as an interrelated network – described as an archipelago. It is both unified and separated: an example of the relationship between one and many. Islands of thoughts and forms are clustered together, yet they may not have a total ‘continental’ definition. Artists are not only crossing national borders but also breaching the traditional artistic borders of form and medium. Trangressing these borders, artists link mediums and forms, geographies and time periods. ‘Walead Beshty passes exposed film stock through airport X-ray scanners, or captures the cracks occurring in Perspex sculptures as they travel to exhibitions in Fedex boxes. Subodh Gupta exports commonplace utensils from India; reassembled as digitised images, they take on a significance that transcends cultural divides. Pascale Marthine Tayou employs colonised forms of African art to suggest the parameters of a truly globalised culture. The tendency of these works is to emphasise the fact that, in this era of the altermodern, displacement has become a method of depiction, and that artistic styles and formats must henceforth be regarded from the viewpoint of diaspora, migration and exodus.’ Nicolas Bourriaud, Altermodern: Tate Triennial, Tate Publishing, 2009 (p13-14).