It is not news many people with conservative leanings have a tight relationship with art. To hang out and know artists is somewhat of a cliché in which posing and supporting is a merit to have. I have wondered why such culture holds on so persistently and why there are artists who allow art to be used for politics and a means for hype of public relations. Some artists are in desperate need for recognition and funds. It is almost a default and expectation for an artist to think and be in need, assumption of what artist wants, is for and must do is to lure money. What is the advantage there to be had for one with means and a cause to promote? Power of art is quite mighty because of many illusion made by Art History and how art is still portrayed as a saving force, struggle and possible win, a trophy. Social status, intellectual smoke screen, intellectual dishonesty, advertising and pretending go hand in hand, grandiose can appear pretty hollow. It may be an easy-looking path to be an art lover but what does it mean to really love art? Lovers of art are uplifted by art, moved but are the changed by it? Meaning of art is and can therefore be huge.
Turn your world into a canvas, turn it into marble and you are the one with chicle, imagine yourself as a maker. It is such chocolate box romanticized image as is the grande artist who creates extraordinary visions to marvel and admire. To glue this vision on which is the dusty load from Art History used over and over again as it does not grow worn out: Divinity at play. Cult of genius lives on since it is appealing to many. To be an important visual artist is still a pedestal many wish to be on and many institutions like to abuse. Isn’t that the most important job for art especially for people who have power to use art to boost themselves, power positions and causes for which art is used as an extension to mark character and public image as art friendly and cities as cultural capitals and centers. Art signifies intellect for some, civilized and uplifting ground which supposedly lifts up, makes something new constantly and is looking forward, is looking into the future with new eyes, ideas and supposedly new kind of cash flow. Money stays in the hands of the few no doubt. Money and art go together in some cases like the crook and possibility for a blow up, too much talk, promise and a grin, yes we are so happy up here. It is often made to look like that art is for all people when it is to create power position and strengthen it. There are many reasons to love art and all kinds of love. Sounds cynical doesn’t it, and it is. Or what do you think when Guggenheim report to investigate is museum profitable in Helsinki is only in English and translated only when protested, that the museum is told to be experimental and focus on development of something, I’m not quite sure of what, Helsinki art scene? Well it sure does need development, more on the attitude and idea level which do not show to be as experimental and new in real life especially when bureaucrats do the shady-looking business behind citizens’ backs and wish to make it look like something new and dazzling. Yes it is a grande WTF.
The rich patron the arts when public funding is not sufficient or otherwise lacking or for many reasons. It is almost duty of those with means, a good deed, a shield with which to fight against all evil, against banality to show extraordinary, against bad taste. Critics who may and will give unpleasant and so unearned criticism may point out what art is for. Substantial wealth created with suspicious ways and those ways hidden with help of playing a patron of arts seemingly a good thing is the normal that belongs to culture of charity done by the super-rich, ideology of trickle down is a good thing there like ever. Therefore I am as all should be very suspicious when the art and business world play the part of being on the side of good as a whole. Guggenheim is a good example of rhetoric in which imported culture is worth more than local G having an uplifting effect on a small operator, an international influence and contacts which supposedly are always a good thing.
Error establishing a database connection: Question since I am puzzled: Why did Nazis steal all the art treasures during WW2? Was art like money in bank or did they love art?
The peril of hipster economics
When urban decay becomes a set piece to be remodelled or romanticised.
Art in Diplomacy and Conflict | Episode 34
to listen is worth your while.
What comes to everyday sadism and how it manifests in people’s relationships? So not only leather and other s&m tricks only apply in the category of sadism. People who identify as nice and good can show quite violent. Bullying is still difficult to make visible and stop when there are no physical injuries only mental hurt and isolating behavior which easily places the blame on the one who is the victim who also complains for nothing and is too sensitive. How to know sadistic ways in others and whether it is you and change those patterns of power play voluntarily is the question all should ask and actively concentrate on since we may not know when we hurt or ignore hurt caused because we may look at ill behavior as something normal and acceptable.
It is a fairytale kind of spectacle or anti-spectacle in a spectacle, if that is a thing. Anti-spectacle in the sense of changing of the perspective towards gender, class, work and art, romantic is the spectacle, a pattern we expect. The spectacle we are used to seeing and thinking in terms of movies and in general how class, work, gender and art function and are, are thought to represent and be like. The American dream in this case where a beautiful young woman reaches out for her dream, a place in the sun and ends up getting more or ‘all’, a romantic relationship with a Man with a Porsche, who is also the owner of the factory where Alexandra, the woman in question, works at as a welder. One big plus of the movie is it does not highlight the work Alexandra does, welding is just work with men as co-workers, it makes the movie hugely more interesting though, and her the one who lives outside the box and is allowed to do so. She is not harassed by her co-workers, her abilities are not questioned. It is truly a beautiful setting, which her choice of work, most definitely would be seen weird still today.
To explore deeper into what the movie is all about is worth our while as it has been deeply overlooked as many romantic movies that are meant for women usually are. To pay attention to details, characters, camera shots, what is being looked at and told via tensions between women and men and why those tensions exist. What happens between the sexes, between women especially, what are sexes both expected to do, look and be like. Movie is a language as is dance as is sex, sexuality, clothing and gender. You have to focus on to read it all and actually think what are we looking at, what happens there and why all the time. It is not just an entertaining show where you can relax and forget what is going on, this is told via contrasts between sleazy bars, working men and art, how women are treated in different settings and how these settings differ, how women want to be treated and what do they desire of their lives to be. Movie is never just a movie that is meant to entertain, not even those that are made for that purpose, nor is music or the dance acts that seem to be out of place. Point is easily missed when the romantic is what stays interesting and in the focus.
In a bar where ambitious fit and talented dancers show their art, act for paying customers who are watching and are a bit amazed by the unexpected shows. Contrast is also to the other bar where dancing is not the primary interest of anyone, only nude female bodies, that move in a certain way. Women are dancing for money but in a show-your-ass-kind of way, but they still want to be discovered and dream of making it. What are people watching and why, who gets attention? Watching happens for instant gratification, simplicity of getting pleasure cheap and for fun. A bar is a world of something else than the workplace and not a place of thought, burdening oneself. Customers of the bar are not the assumed ordinary art lovers, but that is the point. Why should people be provoked to think more than is necessary, why not give them what they want? To whom is art for and why is it a class issue? What is art and where is art, who is capable of art and why it is a special occasion in a special place? High and low seem to be repulsed by each other, classes stay separated like oil and water. The dance acts, art and artists, are really in the right place. Intention of the movie is not to depict a straightforward story in a manner of this is what happens: this is what we dream of happening to us. It is not a children’s story and it is not pink. It seems light, but is heavier when one starts exploring. That are the expectations and frame women are supposed to fit in, want, act upon and are shown in the movie, that those who dare, can change the game. There is social critique hidden there to be found.
To say Flashdance is a feminist movie is not quite what a true movie lover might expect. What do you think about the turn, that a seemingly light Hollywood movie is feminist in a very kick-ass way and about the structural difficult issue of choosing how to get ahead in life, on one’s own terms and talent, and not sleeping with the boss or buddy who has connections. What do you think about when after having seen and evaluated for example the scene where Alexandra goes and finds her friend who has gone to work as a stripper, moving herself in conventional stripper manner, she is grabbed off the stage by Alexandra and escorted out. In the scene Alexandra’s clothing and standing position compared to her friend tell a lot when friend the stripper ends up in a puddle on street wearing only panties and high heels and is cold. Money, she earned gets wet in the rain on the pavement. Alexandra’s loose pants and sneakers when she stands firmly behind the naked woman who has fallen down and sold her body for money to please men may seem easy and naive, but it is something very basic, a woman on the ground beaten down feeling there is no other opportunity for her.
After having read couple of critiques about the movie and clearly many have missed the point: When one is an art critic it is essential to see behind the expected, the image and be free of bias. What is the seen image telling us, what happens without words, what is the setting and who are the characters, what do they do. Do you need more clues, because explaining has to be done also in a very basic manner, obviously also for critics. When you are an art critic, don’t fall for the simple clichés. Such poor analysis destroys a lot, as does arrogance, assumptions and cynicism. Minimizing culture that is aimed at and is about women and girls is a normal practice. It is a learned reaction which comes without thinking. A black woman eating a banana in a scene where women talk about relationships, well sounds as cliché as anything, but it happens in couple of seconds, and is easily missed, but telling. To make it as you with your raw capabilities, without handouts and favours..
Flashdance, is a feminist movie https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flashdance in which woman does work as a welder and pursues her dream to become a professional dancer, also in which women help each other, face sexual harassment and deal with it by acting out, consequences lurking there and threat of violence is almost a certainty. To oppose men means you have to be one and be prepared. Movie portrays different kinds of female roles, a gallery of different kinds of women. The expectations of what women should be like, playing with stereotypes with which women struggle and hold on to as coping mechanisms. They may be afraid to go against the machine or don’t know how to or should they, and those who do not fit in the accepted roles especially, seem to be out of sync or do what they need to do despite whatever. Interesting are the different kinds of female characters there, how there are systematic learned rules of behaviour that stick, codes for genders and how these codes are taken for granted. How women portrayed are in their places and obviously struggle and lack power. They try to move on up as do men, they have dreams. Men try to move inside women’s panties and sex is clearly a very basic tool of control and making it. It is the first thought, easy way out, a getaway car and motive. World of art is a dusty stagnant relic too, which needs heavy dusting. Alex, the leading women, is afraid to enter this monument of perfected trained fragile-looking fairy-like ballerinas and primadonnas. She want’s to make it on her own with her own credentials with her talent and does not need a man to do that for her.
Real life is stranger than fiction says this welder.
“I have a friend who has a simple test for a movie: Is this movie as interesting as the same things would be, happening in real life? A lot of movies aren’t, and “Flashdance” sure isn’t. If this movie had spent just a little more effort getting to know the heroine of its story, and a little less time trying to rip off “Saturday Night Fever,” it might have been a much better film.”
Reviews and critiques strongly reflect the persona of the critic who is writing. For some reason in this case feminist perspective does not shine through. Wonder why.
Case of happiness, find it, solve it, put it in action. Maybe we are all born happy and our discontent begins when we begin to want things others have and we start fighting over those things we are supposed to have and someone we are supposed to be like. The moment we begin to have feelings that are connected with pleasure of having something which extend ourselves, make us bigger is interesting. When does the feeling eat us? We have system of encouraging happiness via things and titles which is how we become consuming beings, hierarchical and sadistic. Pleasure, enjoyment, fun, comparison, satisfying feeling of existing with treasures hedonistic sugary fat something to eat, drink, fuck, toy with all which keep our needs and desires wanting more. We are priced by what we have, and what do we have? What we lack becomes a flaw.
When strong ideology of who is master and who is not, difference made via wealth and origin begins from early age to take hold (we are better than those others because), what other measure stops segregation and sense of worthiness measured by material and irrational decision-making to which is which than coercion. It is society’s duty to make sure division does not happen between the poor and the rich more so for society to stay sane and stable and for equality to happen, opportunities must exist for all at low-cost, education stay at high level. There are of course many sides to how happy you should be and how to reach for that state. Some are never happy, some are happy to go to school. When happiness is too much to take, it is phony, the grin on your face is only stupid. Forced happiness can be a sign of problems such as difficult issues are too difficult to talk about. Case of schooling and facing yourself.
Endless cases of finding happiness and not finding it, not even when it hits you right in the head, is right in front of you. That is a serious case of not understanding what happiness is, could be and where to look for. Which problem occurs when you look at advertising where images and nice sounding landscapes show how happiness could be found, how to be happy, what happiness is. Happiness is provided directly by wealth is the message and is in a beautiful place we should visit, see and have somewhere far away. You become content when you get yourself a new car. It is so smoothly running, low consuming ideal vehicle for you and your family. You are safe inside and free to move like any man dreams of doing. Idea of wealth has built in tendency to fill us or and is something we need to have because we must, we are compelled. Consumerism gives us needs which wealth can fulfill, urges that need to be met or is that what money as means of exchange does? To have it little, not at all, to have it a lot, gather money more than you need because you can, speed of money is blinding. It has appeared to be the most difficult thing to do to share what you have got and enjoy sharing.
We exchange and make finance move constantly, something that is the most important thing for us to stay alive for, value, be valued, we give value to things and to other people as we price them according to whatever, when we need to and when we do not. To price something can be irrational, culturally bound, on a whim. The more priced things are the more they are wanted and needed? Who has the power to price anything is a powerful person especially if that thing is basic necessity. We want priced things as they bring us feeling of content, satisfaction which links to happiness, instant happiness of being important, value which flows on us when we buy, value is like glitter, a better life, priced metals, diamonds and pearls, cars and houses extend value of ours, our status in the eyes of others. You possess style and taste and you express those by purchasing, expressing your true nature perhaps, your contemporary identity, you as a consumer liking what is there to get, getting it. Money is a tool to have a stand, size. Money is power in ways that are often harmful. Money men are those who are powerful, hiding and pulling strings. Yes it is men who have access to most wealth. Money gives us opportunities, possibilities are there to be taken for those who can pay. What is free then and what kind of value do free things have?
Are men happier when they have their hands on money?
No matter what the truth is, the sentence means it is not our duty to make up truth but be open to it. We do not define truth, we examine it. We can even change our opinion and be pleased someone opened our eyes. It would not be the truth if we would manipulate the information we have. Whatever it is we scientifically find out is the most relevant truth at the moment which can be argued as it should. Absolute truth is hard to come by the further we proceed on any field, somethings are absolutely true. It is unbelievable in the age of science we having proof over how we have become to be what we are now there are people who want to believe ancient texts as absolutes, rule people by centuries old knowledge and laws. Worries over religious feelings being hurt at university is ludicrous. Those with faith getting offended in a place where faith and religion do not have a say over is as an idea outrageously stupid. Such people do not deserve to be in university. Why are people afraid of offense is a case of fear over losing funds and friends, fear of violence. Universities that are afraid of losing funds and friends have lost touch in making science. The more commercial universities get the more they care for emotions and sentiments of those who are the paying customers, also those who fund research. People who have money to pay high tuition fees are middle class people who are scared of conflict, afraid of conflicting ideas, debate and arguing which is something that normally happens between thinking people who make serious conversation to understand each other and the world. People who attend universities obviously do it in hopes for large salary jobs. It is clear corporal policy has attended university in a big way, avoiding offence and critical points of views are punished, banned and outlawed. That is corporations dictating what is useful and what is not, what is allowed to say, how we know and what we know, how we can think.
It has been sad to witness that university is not a place where truth is appreciated and looked for but overlooked and despised.
What are the institutions and authorities that need to be made understand power of people? Aren’t they the same institutions that deny power from people, who make us feel we do not have the kind of power needed? Institutions that are and stay corrupt, make decisions from a delusional shell without having understanding or interest in what is going on outside that sheltered shield of bourgeoisie comfort, buddies who promote each other, support each other’s causes and think they are doing good because they are smiling. Especially important rebellion is when people themselves are made believe they do not have power, when they are scared and future seems endlessly horrible and hopeless. Every action that is out-of-order becomes meaningful when people are afraid to behave out-of-order manner, are afraid of being stigmatized and left outside. To be left outside can be devastating and it can be a relief. One can think one is left with nothing if one thinks one is nothing. It can be powerful experience itself to understand how that nothing becomes something. A place where one can learn to understand what power lies outside and inside oneself, within outsider position from where one can say the unsayable and do against freely, finding out what doing freely is. One stops being afraid of loneliness, hurt, cold and darkness, unlearning community pressure and lure of money, unlearning dictatorship of money. It is a place of innovation. We are so obedient that we stay silent when we should be shouting, we should be doing something instead of watching and standing by as destructive forces rule and do damage which is difficult or impossible to repair. There are people who have infinite belief in their power and correctness of their cause that they become blind to anything else.
Actually what Bush comments is pretty impressive.
Biggest issue of all in making change are people themselves, those people who get offended when their views are contradicted and questioned. The same people who think their power is in not changing, in believing the way of life they are grown into is holy, healthy and thereby correct. There are people who need to be made understand power of theirs and also powerlessness which lies in thinking we are made to live like our parents and follow the same path as consumers, workers and citizens. Power of consuming, moving, thinking, acting out, pretending, playing roles and power of working people is in thinking they do not have power other than that of an individual in ready-made society and playing it safe. How every decision we make have consequences is something we fail to believe as important. We are horrified by disasters but to acknowledge our culture as destructive on individual level is still slow and we are unwilling to see it, lazy to change our behavior. The consequences are severe and close by, they can be far away geographically so we do not sense them, they are not our concern as the smell is not in our noses. It is not irrelevant what we do and do not do. It is not meaningless we do not say and act against oppression, act against bad decision-making and think about our action in everyday life. Our comfort should be threatened because otherwise it will be too late to do anything.
What kind of power do people living in slums have? Is it the same kind of power than that of people who live in the suburbs have? Do we feel as powerless, unhappy and alone or are people in slums having advantages people who take care of their own businesses in suburb don’ t have? When people work together it is powerful and changes happen fast, issue is how people can be made to work together to benefit quality of life in general. Community has to want the same kind of change and believe it is possible. To organize such action needs an effort from above, by authority which is not corrupt and works for the people not for authority. Authority exists for community to work properly from below and on grassroot level. Meaning of administration and law is to make society just and orderly not corrupt and criminal.
People living in destitution without education without means to make their lives better maybe give up and wait other people to give a hand as those who have it better should. People who are weak because they are burdened by unnecessary every day struggle which could be easily helped, for people to feed themselves, find shelter and work can be tasks which take all energy. How can the poor better lives themselves when tools for climbing up are either taken away, non-existent, costly, when rest of the society does not care how they manage? When rest of the society is building fences and fancy apartment buildings for those who have money to pay. When money which is meant to help the poor flows into pockets of administrators and crooks? How do the impoverished feel year after year seeing the same shit happen and situation of theirs not changing for the better even though there are charities and Western helpers having their fancy projects? How should they feel is angry. How can they better lives behind fences when everything has a price tag and to live in a certain neighborhood is a stigma, a stench and a shadow, tourists wanting to take pictures. When owning stuff is your worth, when only when you can show off with luxury and look fly with possessions you are treated like a human being perspective into living and valuing life are greedy and an ongoing habit of mind. All that one has to get fast. What kind of values and deeds will make the poor rise up from their situation? As I understand crime is and has been the way up. Destitute areas are infested with crime and filth. We of course are worried how traumatised children will get, how early will they grow up, will they get their education and have dreams to reach out for.
Yes we are worried how things look and we have to do something. mostly we are patching up leaks giving instant relief. What does the surface of things look like, what is it and how we react to it? Lots of money flows, scandals are revealed. Money is what makes things happen in a certain way but we do not need a lot of cash to repair the broken core issues that need to be repaired and are necessary to live a dignified life, still there is a lot of money somewhere circulating. What does it do?