Essays Art As A Political Statement

Essays Art As A Political Statement-24
Today, deconstructivist contemporary art museums pop up in any self-respecting autocracy. Art thus facilitates the development of a new multipolar distribution of geopolitical power whose predatory economies are often fueled by internal oppression, class war from above, and radical shock and awe policies.

Today, deconstructivist contemporary art museums pop up in any self-respecting autocracy. Art thus facilitates the development of a new multipolar distribution of geopolitical power whose predatory economies are often fueled by internal oppression, class war from above, and radical shock and awe policies.

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It is a major player in unevenly advancing semiocapitalism wherever T-Mobile plants its flag.

It is involved in mining for raw materials for dual-core processors. It seduces and consumes, then suddenly walks off, breaking your heart.

It is opaque, corrupt, and completely unaccountable. It is produced as spectacle, on post-Fordist all-you-can-work conveyor belts.

Both models operate within male bonding structures that are as democratic as your local mafia chapter. Strike or shock work is affective labor at insane speeds, enthusiastic, hyperactive, and deeply compromised.

It lends primordial accumulation a whiff of postconceptual razzmatazz.

Additionally, its reach has grown much more decentralized—important hubs of art are no longer only located in the Western metropolis. The Global Guggenheim is a cultural refinery for a set of post-democratic oligarchies, as are the countless international biennials tasked with upgrading and reeducating the surplus population.Originally, strike workers were excess laborers in the early Soviet Union.The term is derived from the expression “udarny trud” for “superproductive, enthusiastic labor” (udar for “shock, strike, blow”).The traditional conception of the artist’s role corresponds all too well with the self-image of wannabe autocrats, who see government potentially—and dangerously—as an art form. But the actual production of art is simultaneously a workshop for many of the nouveaux poor, trying their luck as jpeg virtuosos and conceptual impostors, as gallerinas and overdrive content providers.Post-democratic government is very much related to this erratic type of male-genius-artist behavior. Because art also means work, more precisely strike work.Contemporary art is a brand name without a brand, ready to be slapped onto almost anything, a quick face-lift touting the new creative imperative for places in need of an extreme makeover, the suspense of gambling combined with the stern pleasures of upper-class boarding school education, a licensed playground for a world confused and collapsed by dizzying deregulation. What is the function of art within disaster capitalism?If contemporary art is the answer, the question is: How can capitalism be made more beautiful? Contemporary art feeds on the crumbs of a massive and widespread redistribution of wealth from the poor to the rich, conducted by means of an ongoing class struggle from above.Why and for whom is contemporary art so attractive?One guess: the production of art presents a mirror image of post-democratic forms of hypercapitalism that look set to become the dominant political post-Cold War paradigm.It seems unpredictable, unaccountable, brilliant, mercurial, moody, guided by inspiration and genius. You see why the contemporary oligarch loves contemporary art: it’s just what works for him.Just as any oligarch aspiring to dictatorship might want to see himself. Thus, traditional art production may be a role model for the nouveaux riches created by privatization, expropriation, and speculation.

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