0134 (No) Laughing Matter: Modernism and Xavier Nogués’ Cartoons
This paper discusses the notion of modernism by relating it to three artistic movements – Modernisme, Noucentisme and the Avant-garde – which developed in Catalonia between the 1880s and the early 1920s. From a common commitment to modernity these three movements produced, nonetheless, widely different aesthetic proposals. Notwithstanding their differences, this paper identifies common features in their artistic practices in order to contribute to the ongoing critical review of modernism. Thus, rather than a self-referential, medium-specific quest with abstraction as a natural endpoint, modernism is presented here as an open, interrogative artistic practice engaged in a debate in pursuit of ‘the modern’. This understanding of modernism is then tested against the case of Xavier Nogués, an artist associated with Noucentisme, and his contribution to the artistic debate of his time through the necessarily figurative language of caricature.
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