joi, 26 iulie 2012

on social art

Response to a Questionnaire from the Center for Socio-Experimental Art
“RÉponse une enquête du Centre d'Art Socio-Expérimental” appeared in Internationale Situationniste #9 (Paris, August 1964)
(from B U R E A U O F P U B L I C S E C R E T S)
(...)Nevertheless, all art is “social” in the sense that it has its roots in a given society and even despite itself must have some relation to the prevailing conditions, or to their negation. Former moments of opposition survive fragmentarily and lose their artistic (or postartistic) value to the precise extent they have lost their oppositional core. With their loss of this core they have also lost any reference to the mass of postartistic acts (of revolt and of free reconstruction of life) that already exist in the world and that are tending to replace art. This fragmentary opposition can then only withdraw to an aesthetic position and harden rapidly into a dated and ineffectual aesthetic in a world where it is already too late for aesthetics — as has happened with surrealism, for example. Other movements are typical of degraded bourgeois mysticism (art as substitute for religion). They reproduce — but only in the form of solitary fantasy or idealist pretension — the forces that dominate present social life both officially and in fact: noncommunication, bluff, frantic desire for novelty as such, for the rapid turnover of arbitrary and uninteresting gadgets — lettrism, for example, on which subject we remarked that “Isou, product of an era of unconsumable art, has suppressed the very idea of its consumption” and that he has “proposed the first art of solipsism” (Internationale Situationniste #4).

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