Dispatches from the wilds of Poetania – Firing the (literary) canon

Open-minded scholars
who insisted everything was art –
happily dismantling the palaces of knowledge,
monuments of taste,
and empires of skill –
were soon left wondering
why their heads felt so enlightened
and why the idiot crows
seemed so well fed.
Art itself, and the insulted artists
fortunately somehow survived.

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Published in: on March 21, 2008 at 1:16 am  Comments (2)  
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  1. Personally, I’m with Paul Graham here (and possibly it seems Wittgenstein, to judge from my skimming of his wikipedia article). Philosophy consists more or less of taking everyday words and trying to make them rigorous and well-defined; you usually end up finding that its more or less impossible to do so and certainly not worth the intellectual effort you expended.

    Art (and the philosophy thereof) is no exception. I know what Art is. My own personal definition is rather broad – I tend to agree on this at least with the open-minded scholars you despise. Anything can be art, if you put it in a museum, or merely affix a label describing it as an artwork. Perhaps even if you just stop someone, point the object out, and tell them its your artwork, that alone suffices to make it art. Its just (in my books) not very good, significant or worthwhile art.

    This is what bugged me about all those art gallery openings. Doubtlessly, what they contained was art. Under my definition, saying an object displayed in a museum is art is tautological. It just happened to be pretty consistently crappy art. And much as it pains me to say it, the free booze simply wasn’t that great.

  2. Yeah yeah yeah, I can insert “Wittgenstein” into my sentences to make myself look clever too, you know. For example, the tautology of Wittgenstein’s phenomenology is that it abrogates the responsibility of the conscious participant to re-evaluate their causal relationship to the uninhibited event in question.

    The free booze WAS great, and for two reasons:
    1. It was free.
    2. It was booze.
    If you don’t learn to appreciate wine, you’re going to die cold and alone, and, from what I’ve been lead to understand from the Colgate Triple Action ads, your teeth will fall out. I, on the other hand, will die drunk off my ass, surrounded by sexy art chicks.

    Whilst riding a camel.

    Where is your WITTGENSTEIN now?


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