An art history of contact, 1920-60

By Christian Kravagna

Translated by in2words



  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-6036-2
  • Pages: 296
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £80.00
  • Published Date: September 2022
  • BIC Category: ART / Criticism & Theory, Society & social sciences / Cultural studies, Society & social sciences / Globalization, The arts / Theory of art, The arts / History of art & design styles: from c 1900 -, Modern Art, Art History, History of art, ART / History / Contemporary (1945-), ART / History / Modern (late 19th Century to 1945), ART / Art & Politics
  • Series: Rethinking Art's Histories


How can we reconfigure our picture of modern art after the postcolonial turn without simply adding regional art histories to the Eurocentric canon? Transmodern examines the global dimension of modern art by tracing the crossroads of different modernisms in Asia, Europe and the Americas. Featuring case studies in Indian modernism, the Harlem Renaissance and post-war abstraction, it demonstrates the significance of transcultural contacts between artists from both sides of the colonial divide. The book argues for the need to study non-western avant-gardes and Black avant-gardes within the west as transmodern counter-currents to mainstream modernism. It situates transcultural art practices from the 1920s to the 1960s within the framework of anti-colonial movements and in relation to contemporary transcultural thinking that challenged colonial concepts of race and culture with notions of syncretism and hybridity.


1 Toward a postcolonial art history of contact
2 In the shade of tall mango trees: art education and transcultural modernism in the context of the Indian independence movement
3 Transcultural beginnings: decolonisation, transculturalism and the overcoming of race
4 Trees of knowledge: anthropology, art and politics. Melville J. Herskovits and Zora Neale Hurston - Harlem circa 1930
5 The migrant as catalyst: Winold Reiss and the Harlem Renaissance
6 Encounters with masks: counter-primitivisms in Black modernism
7 Purity of art in a transcultural age: modernist art theory and the culture of decolonisation
8 Painting the global history of art: Hale Woodruff's The Art of the Negro


Christian Kravagna is Professor of Postcolonial Studies at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna

Newsletter Sign Up

Manchester University Press

Your cart is empty.

Select your shipping destination to estimate postage costs

(Based on standard shipping costs)

Final cost calculated on checkout
Promotional codes can be added on Checkout