Monday, May 02, 2005

When avant-garde artists consume

Our guest from the future will not avoid yet another interesting discovery. Those who go to visit the exhibition of avant-garde art, who buy an "incomprehensible" sculpture or participate in a happening, are dressed and groomed according to the established cannons of fashion, they wear jeans or brand clothes, they put on make-up according to the model of beauty promoted by the color magazines, the cinema, the TV, that is, the mass media. They take example from the ideals of beauty proposed by the world of the commercial consumption that the avant-garde art has fought against for over half a century. How are we to interpret this contradiction? Without trying to explain it, we can say it is typical of the 20th century.
- Umberto Eco, The History of Beauty (2004), here in my translation from Polish.
(You can read several interesting reviews of The History of Beauty at Amazon. As always, I only send you to the books I find genuinely brilliant. This a truly amazing piece of work, as usually in the case of Eco it combines profound insight with unparalleled sense of humour and sensibility)

1 comment:

sophiabento said...

contemporarian art works now as a trend itself. This is true for the consumers but also for the new generations of artist, at least some of them. I cannot say that is a general pattern but sometimes I've the felling that I meet intelectual entertainers than contemporarian performers and/or artist, like modern art can is something fashionable to use.


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