Monday, August 27, 2007

The Market is your Mother

The Market is that invisible but overwhelming force that tells us what’s good to buy and what’s not; what we need; what we don’t; what we need to produce; what we don’t; what’s valuable and what’s not. The Market is everywhere. The Market is right. Always. The Market is your mother.

The question is, can art, exist outside the Market? And, more importantly, can an artist exist without her Mother’s recognition.

Good thing my shrink is coming back from vacation next week.

In response to my last post, Vito Polly-Vincent comments, “art arguably offers the best hope for creating a non-market based understanding of the world.”

I can barely grasp the freedom behind that possibility; the possibility of the non-market driven creation. This of course, is not a new idea. It is at the root of anything labeled alternative or independent. It is Robert Smithson. But, I’ve only just had a twinge of understanding of this freedom viscerally.

Making can be a way to exist outside the system, as romantic as that sounds. As unrealistic as that sounds. As unrealistic as that is. It is an act of protest. It's non-dictated behavior. If you can let yourself go.


Polly Vito-Vincent said...

I'm not up on recent art theory at all, but I remember guys like T.W. Adorno and Walter Benjamin basing their entire argument for aesthetic modernism on the notion that art becomes a progressive force in contemporary life only if it seeks to transcend (as opposed to simply reflecting and reproducing) 'the real.' Art should create an alternative reality that flies in the face of the existing common sense. Adorno, for example, championed surrealism, literary modernism, and experiemental music. The Frankfurt School more generally based much of its sociology of art on the problem of market domination and the "totally administered society." I wouldn't recommend trying to struggle through hopelessly dense Frankfurt School works (other than maybe a book by Benjamin called Illuminations, which is relatively easy to read), but definitely do an internet search to get accessible explanations of their ideas and see who's carrying the torch today for their particular philosophy of art. It may give you a lot of good ideas.

Molly Stevens said...

Ah yes. All familiar names.

But, I thought that since post-modernism came into effect, "real" could not be defined, so there's nothing to transcend.

But, I tend to be more of a modernist at heart.

Besides, it seems that meaning is coming back into fashion, as pomo is being more and more challenged.