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Thoughts on Art

Thoughts on Art

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Published by Scott Forster
Thoughts on Art, Essay, Non Fiction, Politics, Situationist, Situationists,
Thoughts on Art, Essay, Non Fiction, Politics, Situationist, Situationists,

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Published by: Scott Forster on Mar 20, 2014
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03/20/2014

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 Thoughts on art. Page | 1
Thoughts on art.
*work in progress*
“ 
 Power to the imagination.
Those who lack imagination cannot imagine what is lacking” 
 -
Situationists inspired graffiti from May 968. Consider this from The Pig that wants to be eaten book. Thought experiment No 86:
 
Art for Art's sake: A valuable piece of art-Michaelangelo's David- has been found but to release it to the world will destroy it.It's underneath a newly built hospital. Should it be left alone or should it moved and destroyed? Is art valuable inherently or does it need a viewer? if art is inherently valuable doesn't that museums might as well always be shut?
 
I see no point in aesthetics as a subject of philosophy. In the past it merely functioned as a defence of cultural norms . Creativity for me is fun, adventurous, spontaneous, a leap into the dark, like love blindness, like your first kiss, like losing your virginity, like visiting somewhere for the first time. Art provides one of the best forms of Phenomenology there is.It is also the best kind of Sociology there is. Poetry cannot be constrained, restrained, to 10 or even 30 styles or forms. It will always burst free. Art also. Creativity is 'sacred'. I think John Dewey is right that art is about experience. I would add that the reason academic discussion of art sometimes fails is that it is separated from the experience of art. What is it that I seek when I read a poem, when I write a poem? Above all, I desire an experience, a mode of experience available to me only through poetry. "The reading of a poem should be an experience [like experiencing an act]. Its writing must be all the more so," - Wallace Stevens. I oppose attempts to be prescriptive about what should be considered art and attempts to be prescriptive about what arts purpose is i.e. I oppose essentialist theories of art . Art should be thought of as culturally and historically defined . There is not a fixed definition of what art is, nor could there be. We call something art as a label to invite discussion and demand something be considered in a certain way. The differences between pieces of art are more like Wittgenstein's family resemblance than a prescriptive list of necessary and sufficient conditions. Art has no absolute universal fixed platonic purpose which can be prescribed to it or imposed on it. Arts purpose comes from it's creators- the artist, the audience and the rest of humanity. Art can have an unlimited amount of purposes-that is assuming it has purpose at all.
 
 Thoughts on art. Page | 2 I agree (to an extent) with Bourdieu that taste is culturally and historically conditioned. art is not and never could be 'apolitical' which is akin to saying art could be context less. The creation, production, consumption and production of art interacts with the existing capitalist system and cannot be truly revolutionary in breaking with the system no matter how radical it's message.as Pierre Bourdieu argues, what is considered art and what is considered good/bad art cannot be separated from class/ power relations. Previous essentialist theories of art failed to consider this. Art is institutionalised, funded and worshipped by people with ridiculous amounts of money while if anyone was creating art in the street they'd need a license or be arrested. What's wrong with Art galleries? (may not apply to all art galleries and museums)
 
Often present and represent art in a commodified often sanitized way which is not challenging for the establishment.
 
They promote the institutional theory of art which says that what is in an art gallery must be art or 'good art' while whatever is not and is by implication not art or not good art. That ends up being elitist, selective, conservative and pretentious. What is then considered art ends up being defined by small elite group of likely wealthy white western men.
 
Following on from that, art by the working class/women/people of colour/ political art tends to get ignored. There's a bias towards older white western middle class men.
 
•Promotes a very limited set of styles and schools and excludes/neglects others(though
sometimes I wonder if it's for the best)
 
•Promotes the idea of a High vs. low art distinction which I don't like much.
 I don't much accept the distinction between 'high' and 'low' art. Seems politically motivated.
 
The institutional theory of art doesn't make a lot of sense- http://www.stuckismwales.co.uk/theory/tblast/institutional.php 
 
The money which surrounds the art establishment is obscene. Paying to view art is bizarre. It should be open to all.
 
Promotion of art which feels removed in relevance to most people's modern everyday
life’s
. art belongs to it's creators I.e. to everyone, to all of humanity. I oppose copyright(while understanding it's a well intentioned attempt to prevent plagiarism) and prefer creative commons, open source or anti-copyright. I think everyone has the potential to be creative but it is repressed in current society or channelled to suit it's needs. Therefore I feel unsure about whether I should call myself a poet or artist since I do not think I have any monopoly on creativity nor do I think I am a specialist in creativity. For practical uses as shorthand though it is useful. It quickly becomes clear that because of the instability of meaning, because of Polysemy("the capacity for a sign (e.g., a word, phrase, etc.) or signs to have multiple related meanings ") , it's almost impossible to actually express something meaningless. So nothing is absolutely surrealist. The project of surrealism can never completely succeed.
 
 Thoughts on art. Page | 3 I think the Situationists were correct that art in the current society expresses alienated creativity. The Situationists have wrote extensively on this. In capitalist society creativity in channelled into venues like advertising, marketing and the encouragement of consumerism- The Spectacle (to use Debord's terminology)- and repressed( more or less) when it does not satisfy these requirements .
" Those who talk about revolution and class struggle without referring to everyday reality have a corpse in their mouth." 
 - In a post revolutionary society, creativity would be part and parcel of the fabric of everyday life. With direct democracy everyone would have direct control over their lives and the creation of society, allowing for the use of imagination and creativity in the solving of social problems.
"In a society that has abolished every kind of adventure, the only adventure that remains is to abolish that society" 
 - Currently in present society, the majority do not have ultimate control over their own lives or society and we are controlled by images. It is an expression of art as alienated creativity that we consider it distinct from life, a frivolous and meaningless pursuit. art should be the bred and butter of life. Instead we should say "life is art" that life IS a creative pursuit. The Existentialists, Nietzsche and Foucault amongst others have said as much. "Dadaism sought to abolish art without realizing it; Surrealism sought to realize art without abolishing it. The critical position since developed by the Situationists has shown that the abolition and realization of art are inseparable aspects of a single transcendence of art"-Debord.
Dada's great strength was to decrease arts expression of alienated creativity(‘abolish
a
rt’ )
Surrealism sought to incorporate art and imagination into everyday life. Both these movements represent half attempts t finding solutions to the existing problem of alienated creativity.
Very Very Deep Poem.
Ah ate a cheese sandwhich. The sects of analysis can dissect it... Ah just made it an ate it -IT WIS GUID!!!!
First, disobey; then write on the walls
 
There's always more to be read :-
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Situationist_International#Art_and_politics http://struggle.ws/wsm/rbr/rbr10/situationists.html http://www.cddc.vt.edu/sionline/si/newforms.html http://art-and-resistance.blogspot.co.uk/p/situationism-role-model-for-artistic.html

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