Global dimensions of
Very often, when the issues of contemporary art and globalization are discussed together, the notions of ‘new media art’ and ‘the art market’ are brought up as dimensions that play significant roles. Accordingly, this chapter investigates how the interest of New Internationalism is met within these frameworks. Another notion whose new international potentials it seems obvious to investigate is the notion of ‘world art’, and therefore this chapter will start by looking into this idea.
One term that appears to be highly relevant for the interests of New Internationalism is the notion of ‘world art’. Today, however, ‘world art’ is rarely used in relation to contemporary art, and the reason for this is related to its traditional use, which can be demonstrated by a small survey: A search for ‘world art’ (= ‘verdenskunst’) in the database of the Danish State Library prompts a result of about ten books. The two most recent titles are very different from one another, but also rather illustrative of the field, so a brief look is relevant.
The first is called 500 Years of World Art (‘500 års verdenskunst’) and contains texts about 38 visual artists, written by various art historians, in 2004.245 As the title suggests, this book includes art covering a long period, but the world is not, in fact, very well represented. With the exceptions of Kasimir Malewitsch and Cildo Meireles, all the artists in the book are from Europe or the USA. Thus, ‘world art’ and “Western art’ are generally considered synonymous in some Danish art historical circles, in 2004, and the preface solely refers to the art historical development in the West, though ‘Brazilian Cildo Meireles’ is