Prelude to the end of the century: the nineties

The weak administrations of the State, the virulent fragmentation of the traditional party organizations of the Dominican Republic and an increasingly precarious economic situation exacerbate the migratory movements from the decade of the eighties. 

This state of affairs leads the creators to make decisions and act, either collectively or individually, to break with the practices of that moment. In parallel, other forms of creation that include photography, video and installation begin to become popular.

The nineties also come with their politicization load and deteriorated economic situation. However, changes of political order and, consequently, social changes are beginning to take place that contribute to a new force in the generation of artistic discourses.
The group of artists that in the eighties joins as an alternative work continues their artistic production, in some cases individually.

The School of Design of Altos de Chavón begins to title artists who are going to modify in much the panorama of the arts. It is a time of multiple changes, all aimed at questioning the status quo and the established order from the critique of art and non-art. The production of the moment happens to have greater links to interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary exercises. Artists such as Tony Capellán, Belkis Ramírez, Marcos Lora Read, Pascal Meccariello, Jorge Pineda and Raquel Paiewonsky break the boundaries of the autonomy of art towards the aesthetic and seek renewed contacts with its context, with the social and cultural environment, with the system in itself. They propose from their own productions a new freedom of approach that promises the opening of new ways but also defines the plurality of the moment.

Alanna Lockward, in her text "The 90's", posed it in a rather visceral way: "The very absence of a thematic rupture and of support with the established that characterized the eighties, appeared in the following decade. The apologist of those creators who ended up being representative of the nineties, Marianne de Tolentino, affirmed that the renovation in the visual arts of the eighties was achieved through a process of evolution, it was not the product of a definitive rupture with the past ... The altars and offerings marked the initiation of the first installationism in the work of Freddy Rodriguez, Jorge Severino, Geo Ripley and Orlando Menicucci in the seventies, and continued to be used in the eighties by Jochi Asiático and Tony Capellán. The hops of the latter (trúcamelos, we call them) reappeared at the end of the last decade in the work of Miguel Ramírez, which invites us to corroborate the scant disposition to change the skin of Dominican art ... "

As for the exhibition, saving important examples -generally generated from the Caribbean or with the permanent collaboration of professionals from the region- it is important to propose a more active participation of our artists in conclaves of international importance. Thus, we could mention some examples of exhibitions that attest to this interest in creation in the Caribbean region to a greater or lesser extent:

Before America. Curator: Gerardo Mosquera (Cuba), Rachel Weiss (Member
Unidos) and Carolina Ponce de León (Colombia), 1992-1994.
• Caribbean: Exclusion, fragmentation and paradise. Commissioners: Antonio Zaya (Spain) and
Mª Lluïsa Borrás (Spain), MEIAC and Casa de América, 1998.
• Identities. Artists from Latin America and the Caribbean. Paris, 1999. IDB. The maison
of Amérique Latine.
• Island Nations: New Art From Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and the
Diaspora. Curator: René Morales (Cuba-United States), Judith Tannenbaum
(United States), The RISD Museum, 2004.

Taken from the Book Braiding a History in Progress, Contemporary Dominican art in the context of the Caribbean

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