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Riding with DeathVodou Art and Urban Ecology in the Streets of Port-au-Prince$
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Jana Evans Braziel

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781496812742

Published to University Press of Mississippi: May 2019

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496812742.001.0001

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Postprimitive Altermodern: The “Ghetto” Biennale

Postprimitive Altermodern: The “Ghetto” Biennale

(p.142) Chapter Six Postprimitive Altermodern: The “Ghetto” Biennale
Riding with Death

Jana Evans Braziel

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter studies the postprimitivist altermodern styles—visually and sculpturally—and the eclectic, communal performances exhibited at the 2009 and 2011 Ghetto Biennales curated by Leah Gordon and hosted by the Grand Rue sculptors at the E Pluribus Unum Musée d'Art. The biennials were groundbreaking international art events that were more antibiennial than biennial proper: they were alter/altar art exhibits held at the Grand Rue Galerie in Port-au-Prince, or in the self-stylized and sardonically punchy “ghetto.” The Ghetto Biennale was not only a dramatic and democratic experiment in artistic form, genre, style, and mode of exhibition but also a purposive and political disruption of the classical biennials that present “the best of” in cities across the globe. That the Ghetto Biennale was held at the Grand Rue Galerie in and of itself constituted a radical disruption of the norm in the art world.

Keywords:   postprimitivist altermodern, Ghetto Biennales, Grand Rue sculptors, Grand Rue Galerie, Port-au-Prince, communal performances

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