[rumori] re: Advertising

Steev [rumori] re: Advertising
Wed, 11 Feb 1998 18:19:16 -0800 (PST) (00887278756, Pine.LNX.3.95.980211175356.11295D-100000ATflotsam.detritus.net)

On Wed, 11 Feb 1998, Boster, Bob wrote:

>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

Hmm. So you're saying the media environment is now aesthetically pleasing
to you, so you have no complaint about this phenomenon?

>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.

Hmm again. I think there's two different problems snarled together here.
One is the elitism of the "Art World". The other is the coopting of counterculture by "The Media". IMHO, just because The Media grabs a certain motif or style and uses it for their own ends doesn't mean its now
a populist movement. I think it tends to homogenize culture, give us a
"monoculture", and a "top-down" one, at that. I'd rather the farmboy in des moines come up with his own homegrown culture than see something that
looks hip on mtv and emulate that. Although hardly anyone just makes
stuff up from a vaccuum... But, the zeigeist that the MFA student
gleans from Art in America (if any) gets inevitably warped and sanitized
by MTV anyway, so your farmboy is still getting something different.

>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.

good point. (although some folks enjoy being freaks. :] ) it changes the
name of the game, basically. I once asked Lloyd Dunn in an interview (its
up on his website now, at http://soli.inav.net/~psrf/tb_interview2.html ), whether there was something inherently revolutionary in appropriation. (I
might have phrased it a bit differently, but that's basically it) I
think maybe the answer to this used to be yes. But now appropriation is
simply another tool, not even avantgarde anymore, and so the task for
people trying to do something subversive is to actually make the contents
of the work do the subversion, rather than the technique or form.

>Postman's problem is that he's never read Michel de Certeau. He assumes

Neither had i, but i've been wanting to for awhile. I read a quote of
his where he talks about "poaching". After that I was going to make a website called Poaching.org. But it ended up being Detritus.net

>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.

Yes, Postman is a little too doom and gloomy sometimes, kind of sounds
like an old fuddy duddy stick-in-the-mud at times. But somebody has to
be.... Yeah and adbusters is great. They have a better sense of humor
than postman, at least....

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

thanx. He was referring to a Marianne Amacher concert at Mills a few years


Steev Hise, Automagickal Adept
steevAThise.org http://www.cyborganic.com/people/steev new recycled art site: http://www.detritus.net -----------------------------------------------------------------
"UNIX is like a rubic's cube ... you feel so smart for figuring it out, but you still aren't getting any work done. " -Mykle Hansen