Everybody Is an Artist Now
Boys nike soccer cleats in the apotheosis of modernism, postmodernism, everyone has become an artist in his or her own way. This is evident in the idea of “lifestyle” as something of one own choosing, the stress on looks, the fascination of celebrity. This is also evident, though not so plainly, in the theoretical questions raised in the art field “what is art in late modern culture, and “is art any longer possible, Some art historians have declared the “end of art, as some historians have declared the end of history. But art has not ended or disappeared. Art has however become ubiquitous and routine. This broad, protean development has been described as the “aestheticization of culture, Art is now within the province of the masses. The historical knowledge, apprenticeship, special purposes and aims, and aristocratic association no longer go with art making it a distinct trade or practice and giving it its particular privileged status. Art is taken in to the mainstream of postmodern culture by the ascendancy of design (to almost obliterate practicality), innumerable choices, the privileged position of appearance, the libertine, fluid self, and cheap nike hypervenom phantom the prevailing sense of irreverence.
The persona of the artist formed in English Romanticism which before long came to be seen as desirable (though not necessarily ideal) is now the typical individual in postmodernism. This Romantic persona was at first seen as elucidating for his expression of emotion and unconventional behavior. With the rise of democracy, the individuality, expressiveness, and freedom seen as attributes of the artist especially came to be basic social values embraced by entire populations. With modernism, artists once again stood out for their experimentations, styles, pronouncements, and behavior revealing and exemplifying the essence and potentials of the society. The avantgarde made up of changing generations of artists as modernism progressed, as the term implies, were seen as explorers of the future. In the course of the twentieth century, the democratic values, desires, and images were systematically inculcated throughout massive populations by education, a competitive and promiscuous media, and ubiquitous advertising and crafty marketing tied in with highlydeveloped technology and production. This systematization brought about ready accessibility to and appropriation of the democratic values, mostly notably in popular culture. The sense of individuality, expanded compass of life, attraction to and experimentation with the physical, sensual materials of the world, etc, which had been attributes of the artist and which had been in some ways granted to him and also struggled for and preserved by him have been extended to the general population.
One central observation made about postmodernism and elaborated on in many different ways in writings on this cultural era is that postmodernism marks the end of the consequences and developments of the Enlightenment in Western culture. The Enlightenment was related to the Renaissance marking the waning of the Middle Ages. Carrying further many developments emerging in the Renaissance, the Enlightenment elevated reason over faith, laid the foundations of science, expanded commerce, affirmed and refined humanism, and created representative political bodies. The artist of the following Romantic era represented individual, social, and political qualities and values forming during the Renaissance and the Enlightenment; which values were established, often violently, as fundamental, guiding values in society in the revolutionary era of the latter 1700s and early part of the 1800s. In general, the hold of the more formal aspects of the culture created and abided by growing out of the Renaissance and Enlightenment and enduring for centuries has been drastically weakened. The individual attributes and aspirations as originally embodied and defined by the artist of the Romantic era have not similarly faded however. Protean popular culture based on pervasive media and techniques taken from advertising for establishing presence and credibility instead of longlasting, stable, institutions and similar extensive, unifying forms has become the primary social mode. The impulses, techniques, and ends of the artist have become the prevalent psychology and practice of society. This is clearly a different world from the one of politics based on voting, representation, compromise and consensus, and normative and prescriptive legislation. And it is a different world cheap nike hypervenom phantom as well from the one of religion with its interrelated virtues such as humility, modesty, and hope; formation of person from faith in spiritual realities; and sense of selfworth based on belief in God love for one.
The artist as the archetypal figure of society of a marginal, exemplary, or idealized figure as in past eras unlikely to change in the foreseeable future. For the centrifugal forces in society continue to exert their force meeting little resistance. Neither is traditional religion with its controversies over homosexuality and the role of women in the clergy and with the Catholic Church, the scandalous revelations about widespread sexual abuse by priests likely to regain its former status and prestige contributing to a sense of community based on shared, acknowledged spiritual beliefs cheap nike hypervenom phantom and moral guidelines. Many traditional congregations and the new, ecumenical and secular, churches sprouting up are making deliberate, marketinglike moves to appeal to the characteristics, interests, and behavior of contemporary individuals attuned mainly to popular culture.
The dominating influence in today world is a globalization whose ways and ambitions show no sign of being played out any time soon. Most residual nationalistic or local ethnic oppositions to globalism are essentially reactions on how to partake of globalization claimed benefits such as tourism or jobs. Even the terrorism usually seen to be globalism greatest threat has so far only strengthened its militaristic and mercantile factors. Globalization with its transnational migration in pursuit of employment opportunities, unending stream of lowcost goods, and involvement of major nations and leading international organizations is gaining an even larger role in national and world affairs. In this milieu of globalization, for individuals the alternative is not between the boys nike soccer cleats persona of the artist and another type such as political, religious, familial, or tribal; but between the persona of the artist and incapacity or defeat. For in this milieu, only the artist, with his or her familiarity with contingency, mercurial yet stubborn self, and particular motives, initiatives, and adaptabilities can function. Very well said.
When art was a specialized pursuit it followed form and produced its own structure, dependant on cultural pressures. Leading to the styles, modes and focuses of different era gradual tearing down of these standards is what gave art its tremendous vitality in the last two hundred years, reaching a crescendo in the first half of the twentieth century and then turning on culture at large in the second half.
For the “ontological artist, as you decribe them, it is drastically important to remain aware of the anarchic freedom of his/her predicament. Otherwise this new mode you identify is just one more step toward the total psycho/spiritua lockdown that politicians and advertisers dream of feverishly every night.
We each have to paint this canvas in our own image.
Thank you for your comments highlighting passages in my essay you found particularly relevant to you. Here a few responses to your comments:
(1) There really no concern about the government trying to overpower individuals; although advertisers you refer to is another matter. The government has rendered individuals so helpless and bewildered with the Byzantine bureaucracy and patterns of deception that it isn much concerned about trying to boys nike soccer cleats overpower them. This condition is partly an outgrowth of the “decentering” which has been part of the essence of postmodernism. The artistic individuality I discussed in my essay is an aestheticized, not a politicized individual. Most persons in any position of note in government are more concerned with connecting with the right lobbyists than controlling the public or engaging in an honest, substantive dialog with it. The government could no more control anyone than it could respond effectively to the devastation from the Katrina hurricane in New Orleans or reconstruct Iraq.
(2) You mentioned the “ontological artist, But the artist, as well as the society in general and even religion, have at most a faint relation with ontology, which is the study of basic reality or being. The loss of grounding in an ontological realitywhich might be a conceptionis also part of the essence of postmodernism, related to my points above. This has sometimes been described as the “eclipse of reality, This is why imagery has become a prime topic for serious thinkers such as Baudrillard. It not ontology the boys nike soccer cleats artisttype individuals I wrote about are concerned with, but their “fifteen minutes of fame” as Andy Warhol memorably put it.
(3) One matter I didn get to bringing out much in my essay is the binding of individual identity with performance. This was implied in my remark about “advertisinglike” techniques, or behavior, in the essay; and is connected with the loss of ontological moorings. Performance, or action, rather than an inner sense of self or a soul is the basis for identity in postmodernism. This is a theme of Baudrillard as well. Check out the International Journal of Baudrillard Studies (IJBS) through google for some pretty good condensations of Baudrillard writings and thoughts.
The government does still has an investment in the weak individual, though, granted it is too clumsy and nepotistic to engage the newer modes of more specified control.
But if it couldn marginalize and contirbute to weak citizenry, who would fight the wars and grist the mills that keep the lobbyists where they need to be to be made as connections?
It may not be their focus to overpower individuals but it is part and parcel of their function and the aware liver of life, and life as art, should keep in mind that they themselves would be most useful to the government as an oppressed minority, satiated consumer and/or merchant of symbolic gestures (hippies, news anchors and third party candidates) boys nike soccer cleats.