[rumori] re: Advertising

Boster, Bob [rumori] re: Advertising
Wed, 11 Feb 1998 11:03:23 -0800 (00887252603, c=US%a=_%p=HIII%l=MAIN_SERVER-980211190323Z-8547ATserver2.orban.com)

Not sure how this is supposed to work, but I'm gonna try posting this
way and see what happens. Please forgive any newbie errors...hope I'm
not overstepping any "mandatory two week listen but don't speak" policy.

>From: Steev[SMTP:steevATdetritus.net]
>The disturbing thing to me is not so much the assimilation of artists into
>advertising, which has been going on for a long time, but the coopting of
>styles, which seems to be accelerating. Grassroots fashions and
>countercultural styles and "movements" are absorbed into mainstream image
>machines at a dizzying rate.

I used to agree that there was a huge crisis looming in the fact that
the gap between something appearing in some cultural margin (painting
class, side of a Subway car, etc.) and the culture-selling apparatuses
(ad agencies, marketing geeks, etc.) appropriating it was shrinking down
to a matter of days. I've come around a little, though. The
kaleidoscopic quality to what's happening with cultural expression in
the face of this kind of rapid fire appropriation is kind of
entertaining. Nothing gets to really become a movement because it's
already in a jeans commercial before the second participant has made
their third art object. All threads are equally invalid as a result of
co-optation and over-exposure. It means the person in Des Moines whose
entire "underground art" exposure is MTV and Interview Magazine has just as much chance at knowing what the current expressive zeitgeist is as
some MFA painting candidate at Pratt Institute in NY who has read every
issue of Art in America. The populism implicit in this shit being
spread far and wide by the culture sellers is pretty OK, as long as
something can spark the populi to get up off the couch and DO SOMETHING
(an issue, but not the same issue, methinks...) Just another opinion.

The crisis for artists in the face of this is significant, but the air
being thick with a variety of messages and forms means there's plenty of
threads to grab onto. And the fact that collage and "theft" of images is part and parcel of this whole mode means people like us
"recontextualizers" don't seem as much like freaks as Rauschenberg did in the mid-60's.

>Oh, and the trend toward "productless" ads - entertaining, for sure.
>But they work. Even to those who are supposedly "aware".
>Its just another symptom of how everything gets mutated into entertainment
>in our TV culture, from news to politics. An excellent book on this
>subject that i recently finished: Amusing Ourselves to Death, by Neil

Postman's problem is that he's never read Michel de Certeau. He assumes
that TV wins all battles of cultural "ownership" and I firmly believe that's not true... He's great for getting schools to start media
criticism programs though. Serious Postman-heads should be sure to
catch the occasional issue of Adbusters as well for similar "it's all bad" counter-programming.

>"There were points during the concert when my ears were clipping"
> -Tom Erbe

Nice .sig....

Bob Boster