Tuesday, 14 January 2014

rejection of culture in favour of the real

I don't know why these thoughts go through my head nor the overwhelming compulsion to write it all down. Perhaps the intensity of focus of childhood training to be an academic artist is having a flashback a quarter of a century later. This is my New Year 2014 essay, first draft and likely to be the only draft. Enjoy.


The rejection of culture in favour of the real.

Why Art Died.
The most difficult task as an artist of this, post post modern generation, is accepting that it has all been done already. The problem is that his leaves us nothing to do, but rebuild what others have already done, to grow within their grooves and entrench them deeper or to strike out painfully against it, branches of branches, and be unaccepted by a majority verdict who cannot any longer cope with newness. Newness is unrecognised, regarded as strangeness and alienated. To fulfil our dream visions we become samplists, taking pre-made and recombining them in different ways, all of which are `already done - it becomes a personal journey of slavery to continuing through the process, the work becomes about an individual and their relationship with dogmatic process, it is ego based despite the lie of spirituality discoverable through permeation of living out someone else's fantasies. We paint by numbers now or we are outcast. I chose outcast art to keep it real and I discovered the same thing has already happened there. Artists of this generation have no original vision. This is why art died. But where did it leave the artists? Needing to create as deeply as needing to breathe, painting pretty pictures for commercial consumer market. The minimalist aesthetic is powerful in simplicity and elegance at this time; rejection of the overly complicated. This demands simple things which people can relate to and avoidance of challenging non-conformist art, difficult to relate to without being forced to ignore it as shit or develop as a thinker. The place of art in social reform relegated entirely to banner logo, psychologically engineered backdrops for taking your money.

In the desert there is only one way of survival. From this wilderness we came and to it we return endlessly for inspiration. It is not the void into which we bulk dump all our problems. It is the training ground, the start, the source of lifestyle. Once having established water-hole, shelter and fire we hunt and gather and develop agriculture, farming our needs. Primitivism is this; and it is as yet unbiased as to the boundaries of wild nature. Thus it deals directly with the spirit world. Here art has its place since the act of creation attracts such energies, imaginal realms wrought into flesh and substance. Clay effigies, wood carved deities, painted skins to evoke spirits to perform our worldly takes and duties. Here in the wilderness of the city where insect and weed find cracks in the dead concrete, tarmac, glass of our constructed environment, such spirits are no less available. Here they are spirits of toxin, plastic, chemical, human ways of repeating the dogma endlessly without questioning why we behave so and even once questioned, cannot break these routine cycles of existence. Here divorced from nature we epitomise ourselves, locked into artificial caves, purchase plastic wrapped artificial foodstuffs and watch a filtered version of reality through television. We return to the roots, the heartbeat, the walking rhythm, to break us from these niches. This itself becomes our way.


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