17 January 2007

Go Ahead... Cross The Streams?



Okay, this is a continuation of a conversation that is taking place here.

Nick started by saying that you could reverse the relationship, that you could priviledge monumentality over reality and wind up bending reality. And I said yeah, but doesn't Paris Hilton, who is just famous for being famous, have a corner on that market? Isn't that how popular culture and politics already works?

And so Nick conceded defeat, but I think he did so too soon. Just because Dick Cheney and Paris Hilton wield the power to imagine to bad effect, does that mean that the whole enterprise is inherently fucked up? I don't know.

Here is what I do know:

Donald Judd won, and spawned conceptualism, appropriation, etc. As a result, we visual artists don't tend to talk about transcendence or imagination... we tend to talk about what actually is. I would argue that visual art is increasingly reality-based. And that this can be a Big Wow if you're watching Chris Burden REALLY shooting himself, or it can be a big snooze if you are trying to figure out what a bunch of artifacts in a gallery means.

With that in mind, why wouldn't it be potent to use dreaming to change reality?

Sure, there's an arrogance to thinking this way that is *not* acceptable in academia. And there is this power problem. Who do I think I am (who does Nick think he is?) that I can imagine your world for you? This is what sticks in your craw when thinking about Dick and Paris, isn't it?

Is that nasty selfishness inherent in bending the world around what you imagine and believe?

I don't know the answer to these questions, but they are interesting, no?

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