[ssf] Art n Activism

Alan Dawson aland at burngreave.net
Thu Feb 3 15:17:47 GMT 2005

Quoting Dan <dan at aktivix.org>:

> By John Jordan - just as some background to art activism discussions 
> that will hopefully happen at the 17th meeting:
> "The poverty of creativity within the sphere of political activism is 
> astonishing, the same old forms are churned out - the mass marches from 
> a-to-b, the die-ins, the sit-downs and pickets -new forms of resistance 
> rarely emerge.   Yet at the heart of most politically engaged artists 
> practices lies a similar poverty, their forms may demonstrate great 
> creativity, but the level of actual engagement with the public sphere is 
> often lacking.
> The activists have the punch but lack the poetry; the artists can build 
> the beautiful, but are often disconnected from contexts where real 
> social change can take place. Finding this space in-between the poetic 
> and the political is never easy, many artists find it difficult to 
> engage and embedded themselves in social movements which they perceive 
> as dogmatic and lacking creativity and activists often find art 
> irrelevant to their campaigns..."
There is more art on the streets of sheffield than in the galleries and

I talked with an 'artist' (purchased by saachi, shown in international galleries
) after the Sept 11th 2001 terror.  he complained of a downturn in the art
market, as corporates stopped purchasing 'art' works for their foyers and
meeting rooms in the resulting crash.  

It reminds me of the planet Brontitall

where the entire population evolve into birds in the aftermath of the Shoe Event
there is a giant statue of arthur throwing the cup at the nutrimatic machine..
the cup a mile long and suspended 15 miles high by art 



"People who talk about revolution and class struggle without referring
explicitly to everyday life, without understanding what is subversive about
love and what is positive in the refusal or constraints, such people have a
corpse in their mouth"

"As a negative movement which seeks the supersession of art in a historical
society where history is not yet lived, art in the epoch of its dissolution is
simultaneously an art of change and the pure expression of impossible change.
The more grandiose its reach, the more its true realization is beyond it. This
art is perforce avant-garde, and it is not. Its avant-garde is its

"If you make decisions about software -- or anything -- based solely on
short-term cost and benefit, someone with a longer view can easily
manoeuver you into a trap from which it is hard to escape."  

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