Politically art that drives me

February 6, 2008

Song & video by Will.i.am of The Black Eyed Peas.
Inspired by Barack Obama’s ‘Yes We Can’ speech.

This inspires. I don’t mean to bring politics into my blog, well no, I do, but I bring this also as a work of art. Yes, you can call it propaganda and to many it probably is. But I believe it, I remember the speech, I’ll remember where I was when it was given (New York City) and I will look to it and this video when needing courage and hope in that better tomorrow for this country. I support Barack Obama!

Thank you Dipdive for giving this to the people.


(I had to find it on youtube to be able to host it here. Does anyone know how to embed on wordpress from the original site, dipdive.com, so I don’t have to find it on youtube?)

Ps. what is of relative value to this blog is the artistic merit of such a video. Is this art? Is this just propaganda? Or better yet is it just an advertisement, and therefore should not even qualify to be art as its “purpose” is not artistic. But is that so true and furthermore who defines an “artistic” purpose. In looking at this (and I know it is very hard for me to separate my own political bias from it, so I do understand that that is in this next statement) I believe it is art. It is raw emotion, harnessed by the creators and yes it does support a politician but it also supports so much more. I see real heart in this and would argue that the emotional energy used to create and give this project to the world places it squarely in the realm of art, perhaps a subgenre of political art, but art none the less.

Happy Super Tuesday everyone!



Triumph of the Will

November 13, 2007

Just finished watching this film in its entirety. Leni Riefenstahl’s Triumph of the Will is probably remembered and will be remembered as the most controversial documentary/propaganda film of all time. I personally am not a big fan of “all time” statements but with this film you never know. I figured since I was watching on a computer and had some time to kill afterwards I’d state my initial reactions here.

First I understand why a class based around identifying and discussing different approach to modernism would include this wor. At the very least it asks many questions about what is art. We’ve already been exposed to the fringes of artistic definition with Duchamp and the Dadas but what this offers is that bridge connecting politics and art. What can be concluded or at least suggested from such a film is that art is not, and never was, a separate category. Art was and is always connected with the world in which it was created, thus the link between the highly politicized Germany and the newly invited modern art medium of film can be better established.

But is it art? here is where Benjamin’s piece, “Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” really takes a stance. It isn’t good art, it represents the commercialized consumer art that is trying desperately to recreate the lost aura. We do not need that aura, so don’t feed us it! The aura died and with it an age of art, but not art itself.

Film and now digital electronic art are creating a new meaning, not a new aura but rather a new understanding of art and the role it plays. I believe here is where the idea of art as an interaction plays a large role, in my interaction with this film I did not find art, I found history, propaganda, and some beautifully framed shots. But beauty is by no means art.

So in my opinion, but that opinion only of the moment and subject to change upon my next interaction with this film, is that it is not art but propaganda, a category of objects that like to look like art in order to persuade the masses.