Any F-----g Questions?

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Re: all shit

Postby FourthBase » Wed Nov 23, 2005 6:15 pm

<!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>random thought - would those who were hitching a ride on the gravy train, necessarily know it? wouldn't they think that their imagery was their own, that their success was their own? <!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>We'd have to look at the funding agencies and patrons, and try to figure out how much of the tune they call</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END-->.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>Bingo! Jenz has Bingo!<br><br>Wagon hitchers would at best be totally ignorant of what underlies their success, but I suspect a lot of them would know and just not think about it, maybe use the insecurity from feeling like a stooge as fuel for their art. Maybe some of them do it for the money and travel expenses? Maybe a handful think they're actually being patriotic? I don't know.<br><br>Some of those organizations that channelled CIA funds to the arts are still in operation, still probably channelling funds for the CIA. Who are the recipients?<br><br>One of the arts I would be most curious about is poetry.<br>The potential for poetry to be used in steganography - but seen by the masses as utterly innocuous (or did the CIA help make it that way?) - might make it of interest to spy agencies.<br><br>Thank god for underground rap, or political poetry would be dead.<br><br>Do you think Ashbery is to poetry what Pollock is to painting?<br>Self-expression...politically impotent...nonsense to ordinary viewers?<br><br>Don't get me wrong, I love Ashbery (although I hate post-figurative Pollock).<br>But that's what this is all about, I guess, questioning the art and artists you love the most.<br><br>Just a random question: do you think we have "art students" spying on other countries? You know, like an art school in DC sends some students abroad to China, that kind of situation. <p></p><i></i>
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I still don't think...

Postby banned » Wed Nov 23, 2005 7:16 pm

...that visual art is worth coopting any more, because it no longer exerts any influence on the culture at large. <br><br>And that was undoubtedly the point in other art forms as well, to reduce the number of people who take that art form seriously to a minuscule number who have no influence in the larger society. In my view, post-modernism and 'theory' were designed to do as much damage as possible to as many different disciplines so unless you wanted to adopt those terms, which totally shut out most of the populace, you were marginalized. I know a guy who is a college philosophy professor and he hasn't said anything in the ten years I've known him that anyone outside of his own department and about 12 people in the rest of the world gives a flying fuck about.<br><br>I know it's hard for us today to realize that there was a time when art and literature were taken seriously, and when people believed 'film' could do more than spark toy sales (blockbusters) or cater to the omphaloskepticism of yuppies ('indie' or 'art' films). I'm 53 and I was born at a time when I saw that world die. In 1968 Gore Vidal and Bill Buckley, commentating on network television on the convention, basically called each other a Nazi and a fag. Can you imagine in 2004 Gore and Bill being invited to commentate on ANYTHING together, even if they agreed to it? Of course not. If you are younger than 45 or so, I don't think you can imagine what 'talk show' used to mean--not Letterman, not Charlie "I talk so much my guests can't get a word in edgewise" Rose, but David Suskind and Dick Cavett. Younger people grew up in a culture so dumbed down that, through no fault of their own, they have no clue what they're missing. Probably the only reason *I* do is that my parents were a generation older than my friends' parents--old enough to be my grandparents, part of the "Greatest Generation." They had books on their shelves my friends' parents didn't--Steinbeck, Hemingway, Maugham; I was taken on weekends to the Art Museum as well as to the zoo, the first record I ever ordered when my mom joined the record club was "Swan Lake." I was 6. Two of the high points of my life in grade school were the Van Gogh show (the largest to that time outside the Netherlands) and the Bolshoi Ballet dancing, yes, "Swan Lake." And my parents were not 'intellectuals'. They just came from a world that was already dying under them. What the 'counterculture' knocked over was already moribund, and unfortunately it knocked over some things it should have revived and opened the door to more mass stupidification with such 'genius moves' as removing prerequisites to college courses (thereby allowing people to dispense with trying to understand the world in historical context) and demanding 'relevance' (I had no clue in grade school when the nuns forced me to diagram sentences till I wanted to scream but I've always been damn glad they did--well, up till the last few years when I realized nobody gives a shit about grammar anymore anyway.) <p></p><i></i>
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Re: I still don't think...

Postby Gouda » Thu Nov 24, 2005 1:42 am

'scuse me, pardon, pard...'scuse me.... ah, finally. a spot on this subway car...<br><br>And I am not even going to give you my own words. <br><br>I will quote a far worthier intellect on the subject, one J. Blum (no relation to William). J. is the mastermind, editor and senior writer for his <!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>The Calumet Review</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END-->, an aperiodical political and cultural newsletter. And dear friend. The following excerpts are taken from <!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>The Calumet Review</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END-->, volume two, number two, Spring, 2005 - from the essay: <br><br>"A Blast of Snarling Aesthetic Reactionism".<br><br>It is J's considered opinion that the last century has witnessed an artistic decline unique in human history. (For the record, I believe he concurs, with proldic's assumed launching thesis in this thread, though does not adress the CCF or CIA in this particular essay. He would share Gore Vidal's stance: "I am an anti anti-communist" He writes:<br><br><!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>This decline comprised several trends. Two of these strike me as especially pernicious and between these two there is virtually nothing to choose. We might choose to see these trends as perversions of the Enlightenment and of Romanticism, respectively; however we choose to see them, I think they may be summarized in the first instance as an obsession with planning and with the construction of a new totality, and in the second as the abandonment of all preconception in favor of the whims of the unconscious, Freudian or otherwise. Thus, the latter is concerned with spontaneity, as Romanticism is alleged to be, and the former takes the constructionist, or rationalist, tendencies of the Enlightenment to new extremes. In the first instance, these new totalities (those of Malevich, Mondrian or Schoenberg and their followers, constructivism and integral serialism come to mind) which unlike the canons of technique and taste which had evolved from the Renaissance (at least), would be all-encompassing and omnipotent in governing (in Schoenberg’s unfelicitous phrase) “the next hundred years.” In the second (which we might associate with names like John Cage, Pollock, Derek Bailey), emphases are laid upon such notions as freedom and expression and there is a tendency to import the maxims of Asian mysticisms. Both result in apparent chaos and unintelligibility. Add to these trends another in which artists appear to spend more time and lavish more effort upon their manifestoes (wherein the lack of intelligibility is oft raised to the status of a positive virtue) than upon their visible oeuvre, and I believe we have a compact summation of what went so wrong in the arts. I must add that these trends are not exclusive to the 20th Century; it is during those years, with significant accelerations surrounding the two world wars, however that the trends reached such distressing proportions. The effects of this decline have yet to be fathomed in full, as conservatories channeled generations of academic composers into the absurdities of integral serialism, stochasticism, minimalism and the rest. Instruction in the visual arts abandoned draftsmanship to the commercial artist and the aspirant creator of comic books. “Technique is just a means of arriving at a statement,” Pollock stated once. I find this to be an apt summary of the difference between the decadence of the last century and the artistic traditions, wherever and whenever they may be found, wherein technique is the means by which the statement is given its best and fullest expression. <br><br>...<br>The decline of artistic standards followed on the mythic inflation of the figure of the artist. The cult of the artist, visible in such figures as Goethe and Beethoven, Byron and Wagner, at some point became the cult of the sordid life to which so many artists have been subjected, not least by themselves. <br><br>...<br>Charlie Parker’s phrases were little more copied than his junkiedom and his peculiar genius remains misunderstood by those who find his travails more interesting than his solos. <br><br>...<br>For what made Thomas, Parker, Baudelaire artists of genius was a combination of inherent ability and a period of intense dedication towards the mastery of their chosen craft. Parker acquired a knowledge of the interrelations of harmony and rhythm and of the possibilities latent in each of these and in their combination which became intuitive, so intuitive as to permit him the ability to deploy heretofore unimagined phrases, as advanced in harmony as Bruckner or Mahler, Scirabin or Stravinsky (for Parker remained entirely within the orbit of tonality, thus of late-Romantic or “Stravinskian”modernist harmonic theory)(1), but off the cuff, and with a rhythmic understanding built upon the masters of swing and blues. None surpass Charlie Parker as a bluesman–not Basie, not any of the Kings, not Robert Johnson or Muddy Waters–his choice of notes, the shaping of those notes and the deployment of those notes in both the gross and subtle aspects of rhythm are the sum total of why Parker is superlative as bluesman and as musician generally, jazz or otherwise. <br><br>...<br>Such men as these at least worked within artistic forms, seeking to expand the possibilities of the forms they utilized. We cannot say the same of the likes of Jackson Pollock. “Abstract expressionism” is not inapt a term. For what is one left with when expression has been abstracted of any content? Evidently a nonsensical collection of squirts and squiggles. “I want to express my feelings, not illustrate them.” Art is come to a dead end, “who cares if you listen?” as Milton Babbitt asked the readers of a hi-fi magazine in 1958. Babbitt was an integral serialist, who insisted on “control” of every aspect of musical composition, leaving nothing to the whims of performers, becoming in the end a computer programmer of unlistenable bleeps and bloops–which are, given the difference of medium, indistinguishable from Pollock’s stream-of-unconscious “expressionism.” Is not the point of “expression” expression of an idea, an emotion, or some complexes of these? With the intent to communicate, at however much of a remove? Walt Whitman could certainly be deemed an expressionist–but none can question his intent to communicate. His abandonment of traditional forms may be a problematic matter for the critic or the reader who tends towards aesthetic conservatism. Nevertheless, Whitman’s aim of mystical unity with the reader (and with humanity, and American humanity in particular) is clearly stated and the attempt at a paradoxical formless form (“Do I contradict myself? Very well, I contradict myself. I am large, I contain multitudes.”) is entirely consonant with this end. What is Pollock’s end? “I wish to express my feelings, not illustrate them.” What are these feelings expressed? How can we tell? And who provides us with an example of illustration of one’s feelings? Whose raison d’art is this? A straw man, perhaps.<br><br>...<br>Artistic endeavor requires the labors of love, as pecuniary reward is in the first place unlikely and in the second singularly disconnected from talent and merit and effort. Pollock, again, wishes to express his feelings. If he accomplished his aim, mere expression, let us not begrudge him his doing so or the means by which he did. But we are not obliged to call the result art, much less great art. The expression of one’s feelings is a matter for conversation, or, if necessary, the confessional or the couch. Spontaneity is altogether appropriate for the expression of one’s feelings. Spontaneity per se is not artistic. It ought not matter to the listener that Parker improvised his astonishing solos. What matters is their richness, their inventiveness, their perfection. That Parker improvised does perhaps make his accomplishments all the more impressive, it does not change the substance of these accomplishments. Coleridge largely improvised the fragment “Kubla Khan;” improvisation accounts largely for the fragmentary nature of this work, Coleridge’s skill and learning are what provide for its magnificence. Improvisation is exciting for the improviser; if the improvisation be impassioned and fluent, the excitement not unreasonably diffuses to the collaborators and the audience. But as an artistic end, it becomes mere selfishness–not l’art pout l’art, but rather l’art pour moi. <br><br>...<br>Pollock and his ilk, Kerouac, Cage, the works of such men do not show evidence of love for either their chosen medium or for their audience. Rather they display contempt, a contempt not altogether different from that of a television executive who bets that there is no low to which a tube-addled nation will not sink. Those who would equate the splattering of paint over an unstretched canvas with the exertions of El Greco or Vermeer deserve what they get. This is Mencken’s witticism about democracy–that the people know what they want and deserve to get it–good and hard. <br><br>...<br>Pollock should have charged admission to his work-in-progress rather than sought to sell his–can one say “finished” if in the artist’s own words there is no beginning and no end? work in a gallery. Such would be the logic of privileging process over product. <br><br>...<br>Once Pollock has expressed his feelings, once the moment is past, what then of the results of that expression? If the expression is the be all and end all, why proceed to display the results? Is this not prostitution of the moment? And does not the thought of the display, of the results of expression, of the fruits of action–does not this thought contaminate the moment with time future and time past? <br><br>...<br> We are left with formless egoism–something not very distinguishable from the scribblings of preschoolers save in its lack of innocence and its rejection, rather than mere lack, of learning. In short, the difference between ignorance and stupidity.</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END--><br><br><br><br> <p></p><i></i>
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I have to wonder how many people...

Postby banned » Thu Nov 24, 2005 4:42 am

...out of any random sample, including those with bachelors' degrees from good colleges, could identify more than a couple of the names in this excerpt, let alone claim any familiarity with their work:<br><br>Malevich, Mondrian or Schoenberg....John Cage, Pollock, Derek Bailey...Thomas, Parker, Baudelaire...El Greco...Vermeer...Mencken.<br><br>I studied 19th and 20th century European cultural and intellectual history in college in the mid-1970s, still believing what I was studying was part of the common heritage of anybody with even a high school education. In high school, I had read "Crime and Punishment", "Moby Dick", read poems by T. S. Eliot and Dylan Thomas, short stories and essays by Hemingway and E. B. White. A few years ago I was talking to a co-worker who had majored in comp lit at UC Berkeley. He had never read Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Stendhal, Flaubert, Cervantes, Thomas Mann. He dismissed them as 'dead white guys.' I'm still not sure what he HAD read, but when, stunned, I expressed surprise at a comp lit degree program that covered NONE of those dead white guys, he got quite snotty and the convo was over.<br><br>Finding someone who knows the difference between Rauschenberg, Alban Berg and Edgar Bergen let alone intelligently discuss it is now about as difficult as finding someone who can converse about High Cretaceous entomology. What was once the mainstream cultural context is now split up into specialized provinces of academics interested in adding articles to the CVs and scoring a few points with the six people at the MLA who cares about the gender performativity in the poems of Audre Lord.<br><br>Feh.<br><br>My dad was right, I should have learned a trade. When the Big Crash comes people who can rig a generator will be in greater demand than someone who got an A+ and was singled out by their Existential Philosophy professor for superior understanding of Soren Kierkegaard. <p></p><i></i>
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Re: I have to wonder how many people...

Postby Trifecta » Thu Nov 24, 2005 3:08 pm

"My dad was right, I should have learned a trade. When the Big Crash comes people who can rig a generator will be in greater demand than someone who got an A+ and was singled out by their Existential Philosophy professor for superior understanding of Soren Kierkegaard."<br><br>You need something to talk about on those dark nights when the generator man is too busy to turn up <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :rollin --><img src=http://www.ezboard.com/images/emoticons/roll.gif ALT=":rollin"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> , but more importantly it has taken you on the journey to discovering the grey in between all that black and white, it may be a more valuable asset in the long run than the G man.<br><br>As for this full time marketing man without any qualifications and part time activist I'm learning how to micro manage the mental fall out IF/when it comes, it starts with my kids and anyone who will listen from PHD to sheeple. <p></p><i></i>
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visual art

Postby jenz » Thu Nov 24, 2005 8:01 pm

banned, don't think I agree that it has no influence on culture. see IR's thread on Judaism/art for a f'instance of how important the visual is. and what is done in 'fine art' tends to filter through advertising, design, film. images hit in a subliminal kind of way, and stick in the mind. no, I think power mongers would be interested. don't the nazis and the ra ers just love visuals? <p></p><i></i>
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Re: visual art

Postby Gouda » Thu Nov 24, 2005 8:25 pm

By the way, dreams end, your quoted selection reviewing the Saunders book (on page 2 of this thread) is by James Petras. Petras is well respected in my book. <br><br><!--EZCODE AUTOLINK START--><a href="http://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/CIAcultCW.html">www.ratical.org/ratville/...ultCW.html</a><!--EZCODE AUTOLINK END--><br>"The CIA and the Cultural Cold War Revisited" <br>by James Petras, November 1999, Monthly Review <br><br>I knew I had seen that somewhere before. <br> <p></p><i></i>
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RE: Dreams End

Postby Dirk » Thu Nov 24, 2005 8:58 pm

"I simply always wondered why all these alleged "trotskyites" suddently became Republicans. Trotsky was no friend of the USSR authorities, but he was no Republican I think it's safe to say."<br><br>Hello from Germany,<br>I think one(!) of the historic reasons that many troskyites became republicans was the rise of antisemitism in the stalinist Soviet Union in combination with giving up the idea of a world revolution.<br><br>What you say about Trotsky is correct: he was a communist and remained a communist. He was convinced that the economic basis of the Soviet Union was still socialist, but that the political superstructure was hijacked by a bureaucratic elite.<br><br>Maybe some of the leading intellectuals among the 'trotkyists-becoming-neocons' somehow kept the messianic character of marxism-leninism and instead of becoming more pragmatic, they switched to the next -"superpower" - the USA - turning it into a kind of a mirror image of the early Soviet Union, a new project of a "permanent revolution".<br><br>For me as a leftist, who knows most of the marxist literature, it's often surprising, how similar the vocabulary of the neocons is to that of leninists and trotzkyists - and how much it differs from the traditional conservative vocabulary.<br><br> Another similarity is the elitist neocon concept of a "managed democracy" and the leninist concept of an "avantgarde of the working class", contrary to Marx's concept, supposing that the working class in itself could only evolve a trade-unionist kind of consciousness (a concept shared by Trotzky) and has to be led by an elite, who knows their "objective interests" and place in history.<br><br>Dirk<br><br><br> <p></p><i></i>
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All I know is, if I HAD spent those years...

Postby banned » Thu Nov 24, 2005 10:31 pm

...learning how to jerry rig a generator and post catastrophe someone sitting next to me says things like "A self is a relation that relates itself to itself," I'd bonk them really hard with a wrench and go back to what I was doing <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :D --><img src=http://www.ezboard.com/images/emoticons/happy.gif ALT=":D"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> .<br><br>As far as the trickle down from the 'high' visual arts...no. Julian Schnabel sticking dinner plates to his canvases has not, as far as I've seen, turned up in Target ads.<br><br>I was one studio class and one seminar shy of a second major in art history, by the way, so it's not like I'm some philistine. Well, OK, maybe I was sort of a philistine. One day when the prof showed a slide of a work by one of the Color Field painters...might have been Larry Poons...I piped up and said "That looks exactly like the color wheel in the house paint section at the hardware store. Why is it considered art?" I also wrote on a Baroque Art exam that I was about 2 fat cherubs or one cellulitic female ass short of dropping the class--talk about a celebration of lard. Luckily I was friends with the prof (who later send me a postcard from one of the erotic sculpture temples in India of some guy masturbating and I had a hell of a time convincing my boyfriend that I hadn't been having an affair with him.)<br><br><br><br> <p></p><i></i>
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What are the current CIA-funded organizations?

Postby FourthBase » Wed Nov 30, 2005 8:44 pm

Ford?<br>Guggenheim?<br>Sackler?<br>Fulbright?<br>MacArthur? <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://p216.ezboard.com/brigorousintuition.showUserPublicProfile?gid=fourthbase>FourthBase</A> at: 11/30/05 6:08 pm<br></i>
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thinking out loud

Postby jenz » Thu Dec 01, 2005 5:47 pm

there was govt funding of arts put in place pre ww2 (Federal Arts Project) critic barbara rose wrote 1967 that it had effect of making abstract art respectable. Edward Lucie Smith writing 1969 about post war period and noting that modern art had 'become involved with the machinery of State", and that exhibitions had become a matter of national prestige wrote "Art aligned itself with sport as one of the means of peaceful warfare among nations."<br>In a cold war period when fear of what was thought to have been achieved in brain washing sphere by Soviets had given rise to MKUltra, and Soviets controlled visual arts in their territories, is it likely that the developments of art asociated with USA were free of influence from funding agency ?<br>and what are the likely effects of that influence for us. I don't agree with banned that visual art is of limited importance, I think that the image making impulse of humans is very important. but we see that both in the Soviet sphere, by very direct means, and perhaps in the West by less overt means that impulse has been frustrated, or bent.<br>Both Soviets and USA tended to encourage works of massive scale - that has an immediate effect on artists - the very practical one of not being able to work withut a patron of one sort or another, and it has an effect on the consumers pof art - not being able to put the stuff up on their own walls, but having to pay homage to it in a controlled space.<br>Soviet work was didactic or propagandist in intent, anti individualist and 'narrative'. <br>Western work apparently feted the individual, but in so far as the personal content of the work became diminished, in favour of a standardised product, in which the artists gesture, act, or intent was prioritised over the creation of a n image or artefact which synthesised means and intent, finished up by equally denying the individual. Its like the star system, if anyone can be made a star, the individuality and creativity of the actor is of no account.<br>so both tendencies stifle individual creativity. <br>further, the soviets favoured a static means of expression, and in contrast, the West created a kind of faux Darwinism of the visual arts, an expectation of evolution which became a headlong rush along a conceptual path of superceding aesthetic credos, with the inevitable 'death' of painting. and this opened up the possibilities of presenting (under the guise of an evolved dada, a formalised art of anti art) the shoddy, tatty, sick, .. interesting huh <p></p><i></i>
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an open mind

Postby jenz » Thu Dec 01, 2005 6:08 pm

also writing about Rauchenberg's combine paintings, E. Lucie Smith drew parallel between their aesthetic and John cage's ideas of 'unfocusing' the spectators mind. this idea of working on the mind of the spectator is interesting in the context of this thread. <br>I don't know if it would be possible to unravel the funding routes as such. It would be nice if it were, but wouldn't there be a plethora of fronts and middle men and nod and a wink favours?<br>I am trying rather to think through what might have been the social effects, and the purposes. its tempting to think that a descent into relative barbarism , a lowering of barriers, is a corollary of a diminution of creativity.<br> <p></p><i></i>
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Postby IanEye » Sun Oct 25, 2009 9:38 am

F-----g b-----g...
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Re: Any F-----g Questions?

Postby Hugh Manatee Wins » Thu Dec 01, 2011 2:56 am

Can we fix the format issue?
CIA runs mainstream media since WWII:
news rooms, movies/TV, publishing
...
Disney is CIA for kidz!
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Re: Any F-----g Questions?

Postby Aldebaran » Thu Feb 23, 2012 3:15 pm

Here's a start, if you use firefox+greasemonkey
http://www.mediafire.com/?5dh0jchxqf7m8w1
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