November 25, 2014 § Leave a comment
If the hypermodern age of capitalism, which is the world for nearly three decades, is the planetarization and financialisation, deregulation and outgrowth of its operations, is also the one that is marked by another kind of inflation aesthetics inflation. Not only are the megacities, objects, information, financial transactions that are involved in a hyperbolic climbing, but the very aesthetic field. Here are the worlds of art involved in turn in hyper networks, contemporary capitalism that incorporates in large scale the logical of style and dream, seduction and fun in the different sectors of the consumer universe. If there is a bubble, there is another kind of bubble whose extreme inflated do not know, however, not crisis or crash, with the notable exception of the limited field of contemporary art market, the speculative bubble, as we have seen, could explode in different moments, we live the time of the aesthetic boom sustained by hyper capitalism.
With the hypermodern times call up a new aesthetic period, a society over-aestheticized, an empire where the sun of the art never set. The imperatives of style, beauty, the show business gained such importance in consumer markets, turned so the design of objects and services forms of communication, distribution and consumption that it is difficult not to recognize the advent of a true way of aesthetic productions arriving now to maturity. We call this new state of liberal trade economy: capitalism artistic or creative capitalism, transaesthetic.
At the time of financialization of the economy and its social, ecological and human damage, the very idea of an artistic capitalism may seem radically shocking. However, this is the new world face that by blurring the boundaries and the old dichotomies, transforms the relationship of the economy with art as Warhol transformed the relationship of artistic creation with the market, defending an art business. After the modern era of radical disjunctions, we have the hypermodern age of conjunctions, deregulation and hybridizations, where the artistic capitalism is a particularly emblematic figure.
The importance of market logic in the art world is not new, but of course, at the time of globalization, is a new level that is reached, as evidenced particularly the growth of investments of art collectors and the vertiginous increases of the artworks prices. The art appears increasingly as a commodity among others, as a type of investment which is expected high returns. The romantic age of the art gave way to a world where the cost of the works is more important and mediated than the aesthetic value: now is the trade price and the international market which consecrate the artist and the artwork. We are currently in the time of the “art business” which sees the triumph of speculative operations, marketing and communication. If capitalism incorporated the aesthetic dimension, it is increasingly channeled or orchestrated by financial and trade mechanisms. Hence the feeling often shared that the more artistic capitalism reigns, there will be less art and more market will be.
November 18, 2014 § Leave a comment
A fourth phase of aesthetization of the world is established, remodeled in essence, logical marketing and extreme individualization. The modernist culture, dominated by a subversive logic in war against the bourgeois world, follows a new universe in which the vanguards are integrated in the economic order, accepted, wanted, supported by official institutions. With the triumph of artistic capitalism, aesthetic phenomena no longer be returning to the small peripheral worlds and universes built on marginal production, marketing and communication material goods, are huge markets shaped by international economic giants.
At the time aesthetization of consumer markets, capitalism multiplies the artistic styles, trends, shows, places of art, continuously launches new fashions in all sectors and creates large-scale dream, imagination, emotions; artialize the domain of everyday life at the same time that contemporary art, for its part, is committed to a broad desdefinition process. A desdefinition art, however, involves a novel form of aesthetic experience. It is a world of superabundance or aesthetic inflation that combines our eyes: one transaesthetic world, a kind of hiperart where art infiltrates in the industries in all the interstices of trade and ordinary life. The mastery of style and emotion spent the hyper regime: this does not mean perfect and finished beauty, but generalization of aesthetic strategies for commercial purposes in all sectors of consumer industries.
A hiperart also as no longer symbolizes a cosmos or expresses transcendent narratives, it is not the language of a social class, but works as a marketing strategy, valuation distracting, seductive games ever renovated to capture the hedonistic desires of the new consumer and increase the turnover of brands. We are currently in the strategic and commercial state of the aesthetization of the world, in transaesthetic age.
Increasingly, cultural or creative industries operate in hyperbolic mode with movies with huge budgets, creative advertising campaigns, television shows diversified television broadcasting programs that blend the classical and the music-hall, architectures, sculptures of great effects, video clips delirious, gigantic amusement parks, pop concerts with “extreme” scenarios. Nothing escapes the image and fun network and everything is spectacular intersects with the commercial imperative: the artistic capitalism created a fertile transaesthetic empire where they mix design and star system, creation and entertainment, culture and show business, art and communication, and cutting edge fashion. A communication and commercial hyperculture seeing degrade the classical oppositions of the famous “society of spectacle”: creative transaesthetic capitalism does not work with the separation, with the division, but with the cross, with the plot of areas and genres. The ancient kingdom of the show disappeared, was replaced by hiperspectacle which consecrates democratic culture and shopping fun.
Commercial strategies of transaesthetic creative capitalism no longer save any sphere. Common objects are invaded by the style and the look, many of them become fashion accessories. Designers, visual artists, fashion designers are invited to redesign the look of industrial commodities and the temples of consumption. Fashion brands from the general public copy the codes of luxury. Shops, hotels, bars and restaurants invest in your images, the decor, the customization of their spaces. The heritage is rehabilitated and staged in the manner of screenplays. Urban scenarios are retouched, staged, “disneyfied” with the intent of tourism consumption. Advertising wants to be creative and fashion shows seem performances. The Architectures images flourish, value in themselves, by their attraction for its spectacular size and function as promotional vector in competitive markets for cultural tourism.
The terms used to designate the occupations and economic activities also have the mark of aesthetic ambition, gardeners have become landscapers, hairdressers hair designers, florists floral artists, cooks culinary creators, jewelers jewelers artists, tailors artistic directors, car manufacturers “car creators”. Frank Gehry is celebrated everywhere as the artist architect. Even some business men are described as “visionary artists” (Steve Jobs). While economic competition are unleashed, capitalism works to build and disseminate an artistic image of his actors to artialize economic activities. The art became a mean of legitimizing brands and companies of capitalism.
The extraordinary extent of transaesthetic logic is also seen in geographical terms. We are in the time of globalized capitalism to impel a stylization of mass consumption that is no longer confined to the West. In the five continents are working creative industries, creating products with style, fashion, entertainment, culture of globalized masses.
But the process of aesthetization hypermodern overflows in much the spheres of production, consumption conquered, aspirations, ways of life, the relationship with the body, the view of the world. The taste for fashion, the performances, the music, tourism, heritage, for cosmetics, for home decor became widespread in all strata of society. The artistic capitalism spurred the realm of the aesthetic towards hyper overabundant consumption of some styles, but more broadly, in the etymological sense of the word, of the Greeks, of sensations and sensitive experiences.
Capitalism has led not so much a process of impoverishment or delinquency of aesthetic existence but the democratization of mass of a homo aestheticus of an unprecedented kind. The transaesthetic individual is reflective, eclectic and nomadic: less conformist and more demanding than in the past, appears at the same time as a consumption “junkie”, obsessed with disposable expediency, the easy entertainment.
At aesthetization of the economic world answers an anesthetization of the ideal life, an aesthetic attitude toward life. Nobody wants to live and to sacrifice for principles and outdoor goods to himself, but if you invent it yourself, create your own rules to a better life, immense, rich in emotions and shows.
November 12, 2014 § Leave a comment
The third great historical moment that organizes the relationship between art and society reflects the modern age in the West. Finding its fullness to give birth in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, coincides with the development of a more complex artistic sphere, more differentiated, freeing themselves of the old nobility and religious powers. While the artists gradually emancipated from the tutelage of the Church, the aristocracy, then the bourgeois order, art imposes itself as a system of high degree of autonomy in their own instances of selection and consecration (academies, salons, theaters , museums, dealers, collectors, publishers, critics, magazines), its laws, values, and principles of its own legitimacy. As the field of art becomes autonomous, the artists claim aloud a creative freedom to works that are accountable only to themselves and stop bowing to requests that come from “outside”. Social emancipation of artists very concerning to the extent that it is accompanied by a dependency of a new genus, economic dependence on market forces.
But while art itself evidence its proud sovereignty in contempt for money and hatred for the bourgeois world, constitutes “commercial art” that, for profit, for the immediate and temporary success, tends to become an economic world as others to adapt to public demand and to offer products “without risk”, the rapid obsolescence. It opposes these two universes of art: its aesthetic, its public, as well as their relationship with the “economy”. The modern age is organized in radical opposition between art and business, culture and industry, art and fun, pure and impure, authentic and kitsch, art elite and mass culture, avant-garde and institutions. A system of two antagonistic modes of production, circulation and consecration, which developed essentially within the strict limits of the western world.
This historic social setting brings a general overturn of values, invested art with a higher mission than ever. In the late eighteenth century, Schiller says it’s for aesthetic and practical education of the arts that humanity can move towards freedom, to reason and to the Well. And for the German Romantics, the beautiful, the access road to the Absolute, is set, with art, at the summit of the hierarchy of values. The modern age is the framework in which it has made an exceptional sacralization of poetry and art, only known to be able to express the most fundamental truths of life and the world. While following the Kantian criticism, philosophy should renounce the absolute revelation and science should concentrate on enunciating the laws of the phenomenal appearance of things, you assign to art the power to know and contemplate the very essence of the world. Now, art is placed above society, tracing a new secular spiritual power. Not an area designed to give consent, but it reveals the ultimate truths that elude science and philosophy: an access to the Absolute, while a new instrument of salvation. The poet enters into competition with the priest and takes its place with regard to the ultimate revelation being: the secularization of the world was the springboard of modern religious art.
It must be added, however, that the sacralization of art held by the romanticism and symbolism was then fought fiercely for several avant-garde movements such as Constructivism, Dadaism and Surrealism.
Sacralization of art that illustrates so well in the invention and development of the institution of the museums. By extracting the works of their original cultural context, while cutting its traditional and religious use by not limiting them to private use and personal collection, but offering them to the gaze of all, the museum stages its specifically aesthetic value universal and timeless; becomes practical or cultural objects to be admired aesthetic objects, contemplated by themselves, by their beauty that defies time. Place of aesthetic revelation destined to make known unique, irreplaceable, inalienable works, the museum has a responsibility to make them immortal.
While desecrates cultural objects, endows them, on the other hand, an almost religious status, the masterpieces should be isolated, protected, restored, and testimonies of the creative genius of mankind. Worship space devoted to the spiritual elevation of the democratic public, the museum is marked by rites, ceremony, for a certain sacred environment (silence, recollection, contemplation), imposes itself as a secular temple of art.
Sacralization of the museum at the same time sparked the ire of avant-garde currents denouncing the symbolic institution of excellence of ancient art to destroy: “We want to demolish museums, libraries (…). Cemeteries Museums!…” (Filippo Tommaso Marinetti’s” Futurist Manifesto “in Le Figaro, 1909).
The art supposedly provides the ecstasy of the infinitely large and the infinitely beautiful, does contemplate perfection, in other words, opens the door to experience the absolute, something beyond the ordinary life. Became the place itself and the ideal way of life once reserved for religion. Nothing is higher, more precious, more sublime than art, which allows, thanks to the splendor that produces, endured the ugliness of the world and the mediocrity of existence. The aesthetics replaced religion and ethics: life is only worth by beauty, many artists argue the necessity of sacrificing material life, politics and family life to the artistic vocation: it is for them to live for art, consecrate their existence to his greatness.
To assert its autonomy modern artists rebel against the conventions, constantly invest in new objects, appropriating itself of all elements of the real for purely aesthetic purposes. Enforces the right of all styling, all transmuted into art, are mediocre, the trivial, the unworthy, the machines, the resulting collages of chance, the urban space of democratic equality was made possible affirmation of equal dignity aesthetics of all subjects, the sovereign freedom of artists to qualify as art everything you create and expose. Given the absolute sovereignty of the artist there is no reality that can’t be transformed into work and aesthetic perceptions. After Apollinaire and Marinetti, the Surrealists launch the motto “Poetry is everywhere.” By breaking with all heterogeneous function of art, to assert themselves in transgression of codes and established hierarchies, modern art set in motion a dynamic of aesthetization boundless world, any object could be treated in an aesthetic point of view, be attached, absorbed in the sphere of art only by decision of the artist.
But the ambition of modern artists was far beyond the horizon purely artistic. With the avant-garde born new utopias of art, taking this as the ultimate goal being a vector of transformation of living conditions and mentalities, a political force in the service of the new society and the “new man”. As opposed to art for art and symbolism, Breton declares that it is “a mistake to consider art as an end” and Tatline proclaims: “The art is dead! Live art machine “by refusing the autonomy of art, not recognizing any value to the decorative aesthetic “bourgeois”, constructivists declare the glory of the technique and the primacy of the material and social values on aesthetic values. The beautiful functional should eliminate the beautiful decorative and utilitarian buildings (homes, clothing, furniture, objects …) to substitute the ornamental luxury, synonymous with decaying waste. Art should no longer be separated from society and just an enjoyable hobby for the wealthy: the aesthetics of the engineer should be able to reset a “complete design” completeness of the everyday environment of men. No longer the beautification projects of the living, but “the machine to inhabit” (Le Corbusier), responding to the practical needs of men and at minimal cost. The modern era sees well be argued, on the one hand, the “religion” of art, on the other, a process of desaesthetization produced very particularly for architecture and urbanism, condemning artificial ornaments and beautification of the building, advocating geometric constructions completely stripped, replacing the harmonious composition of classical gardens by “green spaces”.
At the same time, in various streams a new interest in so-called minor arts arises. While multiply the criticisms leveled at modern industry – accused of spreading ugliness and uniformity – the flower beautification projects of the everyday life of all classes, the desire to introduce art everywhere and in all things by diffusion of the decorative arts. From Ruskin to Art Nouveau, William Morris to the Arts & Crafts movement, and then to the Bauhaus, modernist currents abound who denounced “the egoistic conception of life as an artist” (Van de Velde), the pernicious distinction between “Great Art” and “minor arts”, advocating the equal dignity of all forms of art, a useful and democratic art sustained by the rehabilitation of the applied arts, industrial arts, arts of decoration and construction. No longer want pictures and statues reserved to a high social class, but an art that invests in furniture, the wallpaper, the tapestries, the kitchenware, textiles, architectural facades, on posters. With the democratic era, the art takes on mission to save society, regenerate the quality of the home and the happiness of the people, “change the lives” of all days: the Modern Style was baptized by Giovanni Beltrami as “socialism della Belleza”.
The very aesthetics of the modern age followed, so the two main roads. On the one hand, the radical aesthetics of pure art, art for art’s sake, freed from all works of utilitarian purposes, having no other purpose than themselves. On the other, precisely the opposite, the project of a revolutionary art “for the people”, a useful art that makes itself felt in the smallest details of everyday-oriented and well-being of most life.
Indeed, the industrial and commercial world was the primary craftsman of modern aesthetization of the world and its democratic expansion.
November 11, 2014 § Leave a comment
Heir of classical antiquity, the exceptional importance of this period in art history, his works are a model of aesthetic perfection of the Renaissance to the present day. Are imposed the principles of harmony, balance the proportions, symmetry, a fair measure. The process of aesthetization is no longer separate of the purification of forms, the desire for a balanced and idealized beauty, synonymous with elegance and grace. Art does not imitate nature, she must sublimate it, transfiguring it by expressing the beauty ideal, harmonious perfection that is the cosmos itself.
The humanism of the Renaissance rehabilitates and expressly claimed, in the late Middle Ages comes a second stage that extends into the XVIII century. Is the premise of aesthetic modernity with the appearance of status separate from the artist craftsman, with the idea of the creative power of the artist-genius signing their works, with the unification of the arts in particular unitary concept of art in its modern sense, applying to all the fine arts, with works designed to please a lucky and educated public and not simply already communicating religious teachings and to meet the requirements of the dignitaries of the Church. The aesthetic dimension of art itself becomes important, the artist must endeavor to eliminate any imperfections and find images that are consistent with what is more beautiful, more harmonious in nature. With the gradual emancipation of artists in relation to corporations, they will benefit, through its contracts with sponsors, a margin of initiative until then unknown: the adventure of empowering the artistic and aesthetic mastery is underway.
This secular moment is contemporary of the life in the court, the appearance of fashion and elegance of their games, the treaties of “manners” but also an architecture that offers the very picture of refinement and grace, aesthetic urbanism inspiration, gardens with terraces that appear to paintings, sculptures, ponds, fountains, broad perspectives, designed to enchant and amaze the eye. Not only just commoditas, but the grace of harmonious forms, aesthetic pleasure, the venustas (Alberti), in pleasant, beautiful cities, “a pleasant appearance and pleasant stay” (Francesco di Giorgio Martini). Artists are requested and invited to the European courts to create magnificent scenery, decorate the inside of castles and planning parks. Churches wanting to seduce and attract the faithful offer, with the Baroque period, a lush theatrical spectacle with overloaded facades of sculptures, structures that disappear under the trimmings, optical effects, games of shadow and light, canopies, tabernacles, pulpits, wards, chalices, ciboria abundantly decorated, opens a whole exuberant art to create a grand spectacle, enhance the beauty and splendor of decoration ornaments. Monarchs, princes, the aristocratic classes throw themselves into large intended to make their cities and their finest residences, send build castles marked by elegance of style, build palaces, sumptuous villas, framed by huge parks full of statues and entrusted to the best architects. Remodel cities according to an aesthetic point of view, creating buildings consist of aligned harmonious facades, streets that offer great effects prospects squares beautification of cities has become a very important political goal. It must be an “urban art”, a theatrical staging of city and nature, ennobling the inhabited environment and increasing the prestige, the greatness, the glory of kings and princes.
From the Renaissance, the art, the beauty, the aesthetic values acquired a value, a dignity, new social importance, which is witnessed by urban planning, the architecture, gardens, furniture, works of glass and faience in the nude painting and sculpture, the ideals of harmony and proportion. Taste for art and willingness to styling the framework of life that functions as a means of social assertiveness, way to mark the status and prestige of the larger more powerful. The aristocratic aesthetization, throughout this cycle, the intense process of aesthetization (elegance, refinement, grace of forms) in place in the upper echelons of society is not driven by social logic, political strategies of dramatization of power, the imperative of social representation and the primacy of competition for status and prestige of the constituent holistic society in which the importance of the relation of men overcomes the relation of men to things.
November 5, 2014 § Leave a comment
For thousands of years, the arts into force in so-called primitive societies were not in fact created with an aesthetic intent and given a purely aesthetic “disinterested” and free, but with an essentially ritual purpose of consumption. In these cultures, what is intended with the style can’t be separated from, magic, sexual and religious organization of the clan. Inserted in collective systems that give them meaning, aesthetic forms of phenomena are not separate and autonomous functioning: the social and religious structure that everywhere dictates the agenda of artistic forms. Are societies in which the aesthetic conventions, social and religious organization are structurally related and undifferentiated. By translating the organization of the cosmos, to illustrate the myths expressing the tribe, clan, sex, pacing the important moments of social life, the masks, the headdresses, the paintings of the face and body, the sculptures, the dances have first a function and a ritual and religious value.
Because art has no separate existence, informs the whole of life: pray, work, exchange, fight, all these activities involve aesthetic dimensions that are anything but trivial or peripheral, since they are necessary to the success of various social and individual operations. The birth, death, rites of passage, hunting, marriage, war give way, everywhere, a artialization work done by dances, chants, fetishes, props, ritual narratives strictly differentiated according to age and sex. Artialization in ways that are not intended to be admired for their beauty, but to give practical powers: cure diseases, to oppose the negative spirits, make it rain, make alliances with the dead. Many of these ritual objects are not manufactured to be preserved: throw us off, destroyed after use and then repainted before each ceremony. Nothing of professional distinguished artists, nothing of works of art, “disinterested” or even often terms like “art”, “aesthetic”, “beauty”. And yet, as Mauss stressed “the importance of the aesthetic phenomenon in all societies that preceded us is considerable.”
Similar control over the entire collective aesthetic forms certainly not excluded, in either circumstance, some freedom of establishment or individual expressiveness. But are limited and specific phenomena, as well as aesthetic practices, these societies, are basically required by their cultural and social functions and are accompanied by extremely strict rules. Everywhere, the arts are implemented in compliance with draconian rules and fidelity to tradition. They don’t intent to innovate and invent new codes, but obey the canons received from ancestors or gods. It is a ritual artialization, traditional, religious, which marked the longest period in the history of the styles: a pre-reflective artialization without essentially artistic values, no specific and autonomous aesthetic intent system.
November 5, 2014 § Leave a comment
Artistic or creative capitalism transestetic, which is characterized by the growing importance of sensitivity and design process for a systematic work of stylization of goods and commercial places, the widespread integration of art, the look and affect in the consumer markets universe, create a chaotic economic world landscape stylizing the universe everyday.
With the artistic capitalism combines a novel form of economy, society and art in history. There is no society that does not involve, in one way or another, work in styling or “artialization” of the world, what distinguishes a time or a society, to make the humanization and socialization of the senses and tastes.
This anthropological and trans-historical dimension of aesthetic activity always appears in different forms and extremely social structures. To highlight what is specific stylization of the hypermodern world, Gilles Lipovetsky and Jean Serroy, adopted a panoramic view, the view over the long term, outlining the extreme constitutive logic of the great historic models of the relationship between art and the social. In this regard, we highlight four great “pure” models who organized, throughout history, the timeless styling process in the world: the ritual artialization, the aristocratic aestheticization, the modern world and the aestheticization transestétic age.
October 30, 2014 § Leave a comment
Acknowledge the contribution of the artistic capitalism as well as its failures is the goal of this book of Gilles Lipovetsky and Jean Serroy.
The purpose of this book is theoretical, opens, however, a large approximation of the empirical facts related to the aesthetic market space. Instead of arresting a purely conceptual or theoretical reading-engage deliberately to support the thesis advanced through descriptive analysis of multiple areas of hypermodern aesthetic. Insofar as the order of the artistic capitalism infiltrates in all sectors related to consumer world, it would be necessary to show the coherence of the system and its operation focusing as close as possible the diversity of creative and imaginative, and organizational realities individual. Hence the intersections between macroscopic and microscopic, the “abstract” and “concrete”, theoretical and descriptive, but also between long-term and contemporary.
Favoring only the profitability and the kingdom of money, capitalism emerges as a juggernaut that respects no tradition or worship any higher principle, whether ethical, cultural or ecological. System driven by an imperative of profit, has no other aim than itself, the liberal economy presents a nihilistic aspect whose consequences are not only unemployment and job insecurity, social inequality and human dramas, but also the disappearance of harmonious life forms, the fading charm and pleasure of social life. Wealth of the world, impoverished existence; triumph of capital, liquidation of manners; great power of finance, proletarianization of lifestyles.
Capitalism thus appears as a system incompatible with a worthy aesthetic life of that name, with the harmony, with beauty, with a good life.