Thursday, January 26, 2012

Americana as contemporary obsession...

...just as America would appear to be going into a decline. Dave Cole's art below seems to interact with the growing trend toward an archival American "heritage," particularly amongst white, college educated youth. I think this sculpture captures something of it's provincial quality, it's danger of mutual nullification, and the malignant undercurrent on top of which it sits.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Mic-checking and the Occupy Movement

An clear summation of the principles behind the Occupy Movement, to my mind, from PJ Rey in Inside Higher Education:

"The current debate surrounding Occupy’s mic-check tactic is in desperate need of an updated notion of free speech that accounts not only for negative freedom (i.e., freedom from constraints) but also for positive freedom (i.e., freedom to be recognized) as well. That is to say, for the right to free (political) speech to have a practical significance, it must also imply a right of equal access to the public sphere. Of course, there are practical limits to equal access. Attention given to one individual or group usually comes at the expense of attention to others. But what the Occupy movement seems to be rejecting is the current (arguably anti-democratic) reality where distribution of access is left to be determined by market forces. Occupiers are struggling for the democratization of political speech. The primary purpose of Occupy’s use of the human microphone at public speaking events is not to disrupt, but to be heard. It is not an assault on free speech but a tactic for obtaining it.

Endless Spankings