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Friday, October 07, 2016

Always trust your lying eyes

Modern art, including Abstract Expressionism, was never anything more than government-funded bullshit.
There's little more divisive than modern art—most take a staunch "brilliance" or "bullshit" stance. So it should come as a surprise that the straight-laced feds at the CIA leaned toward the former camp—or at least saw it as brilliantly exploitable in the psychological war against the Soviets. Reports from former agents acknowledge what was always a tall tale in the art world—that CIA spooks floated pioneering artists like Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Robert Motherwell, to drop an aesthetic nuke on Communism. What seemed like natural popularity of certain artists was, in part, actually a deliberate attempt at psychological warfare, backed by the US government.

But why modern art? At the time period in question—the 1950s and 60s—the artistic style of the moment was Abstract Expressionism. Abstract Expressionism (or AbEx, if you want to impress people at your next snooty cocktail party) stood for, above all else, self expression. Radically so....

The CIA wanted this art to be global. So it dumped millions upon millions of dollars to be secret patrons of art world darlings like Pollock. Fake foundations, used as CIA slush funds, sponsored international exhibitions.
It's not art. It's propaganda, the so-called artists were government whores, and the high art cognoscenti were complete suckers.

You're not a philistine for preferring Truth and Beauty to CIA propaganda and creative prostitution.

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126 Comments:

Blogger Mighty Lou October 07, 2016 5:42 AM  

I always thought that the high price of many of these modern, abstract paintings was a clever way to move money around.

Blogger Laguna Beach Fogey October 07, 2016 5:43 AM  

I'm not surprised. I always detested that crap.

Anonymous Braz MK October 07, 2016 5:48 AM  

Some of the agents probably were more interested in the money(millions upon millions) than in the propaganda.

Blogger Bogey October 07, 2016 5:53 AM  

From the same article: "And after many centuries people say, 'Oh look! the Sistine Chapel, the most beautiful creation on Earth!' It's a problem that civilisation has faced ever since the first artist and the first millionaire or pope who supported him. And yet if it hadn't been for the multi-millionaires or the popes, we wouldn't have had the art."

No one ever questioned whether or not the Sistine chapel was art or in their right minds would say it was ugly.

Blogger Honky Cat October 07, 2016 5:55 AM  

I look at the beautiful works of the American Regionalists, and I can only wonder how American painting would have developed if authentic artistic traditions had not been stifled by the culture distorters.

Anonymous 5343 Kinds of Deplorable October 07, 2016 5:58 AM  

I used to think I was paranoid, and often didn't even voice some of the suspicions I had about media, government and business and their hidden agendas because I would have sounded like a total whackjob.

Now I'm kicking myself for missing the obvious ...

Blogger Bogey October 07, 2016 6:00 AM  

Jackson Pollack looks like an obsessive compulsive. Putting a paint streak here or there only because he has a sense that it must go here or there. Like an obsessive compulsive organizing a bookshelf, alpha order, yet red books must be next to each other, or these spines just look naturally good next to one another, etc.

Blogger Bogey October 07, 2016 6:08 AM  

@5 I saw a pretty good documentary on Thomas Hart Benton, modernists didn't care for his work.

With the CIA revelations we can see what artists truly made an honest living now.

Anonymous Chris M. October 07, 2016 6:11 AM  

Even when I was in art school I would look at modern art peices and think, "this is clearly a scam." The only people who ever bothered to grasp fundamentals and the significance of beauty were the animators.

Anonymous rienzi October 07, 2016 6:22 AM  

Interesting piece. I always thought that abstract expressionism took off since the art world resides in NYC, and our (((tribe))) friends, like muslims, weren't allowed representational art. Only way they could put a big canvas on the wall, and feel all superior to the hoi polloi without incurring the wrath of their rabbi.

Blogger Frank Lin October 07, 2016 6:30 AM  

Hmm... about the time this was hapleneing... I wonder if it caused a brain drain of talented, realist artists into comic books, pulps, and eventually games?

Blogger Mountain Man October 07, 2016 6:42 AM  

I remember a friend of my parents talking about the destruction of art by the cultural marxists and the CIA - back in the early 90's. !
He was (and still is) a very famous artist to this day. His paintings are beautiful - along the lines of a Winslow Homer.
This guy was a well read renaissance man who was feeding me tons of alternative sources of information i.e JBS literature, books on Fabian Socialism etc.. This was pre-internet mind you, so receiving this information was my first step into the world of the Red Pill. It set me on the journey of Truth seeking

Anonymous Dyskord October 07, 2016 6:46 AM  

This makes sense. the modern art bubble is poised to burst. Feminists barfing paint on blank canvases, degenerate hipsters putting crucifixes in urine or just splashing paint like a naughty two year old could only maintain its relevance as long as there were useful idiots easily convinced to don the Emperors new clothes.

I sincerely wonder how the future generations will look upon us.
They were so stupid most people actually believed in AGW
They were so pretentious:
The best art they produced was layering different shades of white on a white canvass.
The best sculptures they made were recycled from garbage and metals and looked like garbage.
They were so corrupt that a woman who lied, cheated and proved her incompetence to lead ran for POTUS.
Their system of governance was so compromised that Oligarchs and unelected bureaucrats determined the fate of nations.
The Elite (((Globalists))) lived as an untouchable aristocracy, beholden to no people, only their own desires and ambitions.

Blogger Laguna Beach Fogey October 07, 2016 6:47 AM  

I'm reminded of the great 'Nat Tate: An American Artist' hoax of 1998 perpetrated by trolls William Boyd and David Bowie on the New York art establishment and social elites.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nat_Tate:_An_American_Artist_1928%E2%80%931960

OpenID basementhomebrewer October 07, 2016 6:49 AM  

Remember, USgov just can't find anything in the budget to cut.

Blogger Gilbert Ratchet October 07, 2016 6:52 AM  

I think that the CIA saw Abstract Expressionism as a riposte to Socialist Realism. Jackson Pollock, as a free American, was allowed to decide where the paint went!

Blogger Bogey October 07, 2016 6:52 AM  

Even when I was in art school I would look at modern art peices and think, "this is clearly a scam." The only people who ever bothered to grasp fundamentals and the significance of beauty were the animators.

Bingo, and we were taught to hate Disney by academics because corporation. Yet Walt hired the best artists to animate his movies and also to give lectures at the Disney studios. Imagine sitting in a class and being payed to listen to a lecture by Frank Lloyd Wright. Animators had it right from the beginning.

Blogger Minecraft Chuck October 07, 2016 6:54 AM  

Talk about congruence. The Soviets were doing the exact same thing to us - paying for and pushing the modern art movement in the West. They considered art to be important to the morale of the people, and saw modern art as a weapon. You may notice that there was no extensive modern art movement behind the iron curtain. They knew better.

Blogger praetorian October 07, 2016 7:00 AM  

Two easy, funny reads for the layman: "The Painted Word" and "From Bauhaus to Our House" by Tom Wolfe.

Standing in the Memorial Glade at Cal, slowly swinging my eyes back and forth between Evans Hall and Doe Library was when I first realized: I was a conservative, and they all had to die.

Blogger Bogey October 07, 2016 7:07 AM  

@19 the ugliest buildings in human history, brought to you be the Bauhaus, thank you Europe.

Related, is there a city with an uglier skyline than Chicago out there?

Anonymous VFM #6306 October 07, 2016 7:07 AM  

I could have sworn that the art was funded by the Soviets to undermine the American aesthetic. How ironic that the wound was self-inflicted.

Blogger Bogey October 07, 2016 7:12 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Anonymous Galactic Starfleets of Deplorable Spartacus October 07, 2016 7:27 AM  

VFM #6306 wrote:I could have sworn that the art was funded by the Soviets to undermine the American aesthetic. How ironic that the wound was self-inflicted.

Th wound was inflicted by the same network of TPTB who created and propped up the Soviet Union.

Blogger Amy October 07, 2016 7:34 AM  

Never liked this stuff. I can appreciate some art made in our contemporary era, but Modernism in art, music, literature, and theatre is all a mess of fractured psyches not even attempting coherence.

Blogger al October 07, 2016 7:42 AM  

I wonder if the art market these days is mostly just money laundering. It seems artists and art buyers have a cheeky sense of humor and think it's funny to conspicuously consume ridiculous art to launder money, and to do it in clear sight of us ignorant plebs. Off topic: Vox, you may be interested in Theodore Postol's examination of the Missile Defense System on youtube if you haven't seen it. He was one of the guys that debunked the Ghouta attack in Syria, and I thought the topic would appeal to you since you've been discussing conflict with Russia lately.

Blogger stevo October 07, 2016 7:45 AM  

I've heard that the most talented sculptors work in hollywood doing special effect stuff that requires actual mastery

Blogger dc.sunsets October 07, 2016 7:48 AM  

Another brick in the wall demonstrating the gangrene in the mass human society of today. The human species is a poor fit when its numbers swell to this level. Our social & political systems spin wildly off any semblance of sanity.

Malthus will have his day, but not in any way he envisioned.

Blogger Deplorable Gaiseric October 07, 2016 7:51 AM  

Speaking of trusting your lying eyes; election results may not be all that they seem...

http://christiantimesnewspaper.com/breaking-tens-of-thousands-of-fraudulent-clinton-votes-found-in-ohio-warehouse/

Blogger Duke Norfolk October 07, 2016 7:51 AM  

Holy crap! Why have I never heard this. The linked Gizmodo piece is from 2010. And the Independent piece he linked to is from - 1995!

That said, none of it surprises me. The US fed govt has distorted and corrupted so many aspects of the world over the last century, it's nauseating.

It's just another case of "Emperor's New Clothes" too. So many people nodded their heads and said, "oooh, it's so edgy and creative", etc. ad nauseum. Blech.

Anonymous Strange Aeons October 07, 2016 7:53 AM  

Say what you will but I still like 'dogs playing poker'...

Anonymous CC October 07, 2016 7:57 AM  

I actually bought the book referenced in the article for my dad as a Christmas present, he was always impossible to buy presents for and I think I was doing that thing where you end up buying something more for yourself. The X-Files was huge at the time and I've always been fascinated by conspiracies. I asked him months later what he thought of it and he said he didn't think it was any good, he didn't like conspiracy theories and he thought Americans were obsessed with them. I wanted to read it myself then, but I never got around to it and then I decided "Ah, he's probably right, it probably is all shite." (The X-Files had become quite ludicrious at that stage anyway).

I got reacquainted with this knowledge through a link from a comment on this site (I think) to a talented realist artist called Miles Mathis, who in the last few years has used the corruption of art as the thread to help him unravel the reason for the craziness of modern Western society. As a realist he wondered why he'd been marginalised by the art world his entire life.

I encourage anybody who's interested to check out his site, he might be a crank, but much of what he writes seems very plausible and he resists drawing definitive conclusions. What makes him doubly interesting is his analysis of photographic evidence due to his knowledge of lighting and perspective etc. The guy is clearly very very smart and much of his stuff is very entertaining. He posits that all of modernism was a way of co-opting culture for monetary purposes by rich families, as well as cultural subversion, including taking power away from the church. He claims the CIA and other intelligence was behind many movements and people such as Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein and Alistair Crowley to the Beat poets and to people like Noam Chomsky today. I recommend his post on the Manson family murders, the way he dissects the photos is mindbending, I couldn't help but agree with his conclusions that many of them were doctored.

www.mileswmathis.com

Anonymous Galactic Starfleets of Deplorable Spartacus October 07, 2016 7:59 AM  

The Gizmodo is an example of a limited-hangout, damage-control misdirection, written by a Gamma.

What seemed like natural popularity of certain artists was, in part, actually a deliberate attempt at psychological warfare, backed by the US government...

Wrong. It was and is backed by the shadows behind the alleged .gov. The psy-warfare is against us in the West, by design. It is intended to demoralize, shatter, displace, atomize, as part and parcel of cultural Marxism.

Gamma tell + 'pay no attention' + reaffirmation of filth-

So, I guess that would make the CIA the Pope? Who's to say what Pollock would have thought of the arrangement had it been disclosed to him, but I'll still prefer to look at his work as a piece of beauty...

*puts down barf bag*
Miles Mathis has far more detail on the fraud of Modern Art, going back years.

http://mileswmathis.com/updates.html
http://mileswmathis.com/launder.pdf

Blogger James Dixon October 07, 2016 8:01 AM  

We had a discussion about music and art a couple of months ago where someone was extolling the magnificence of Pollack to we cretins who were obviously incapable of understanding it. I was rather dismissive of his position, to put it mildly. :)

Great art, by definition, speaks to people at a fundamental level. It doesn't have to be "explained".

Blogger Ken Prescott October 07, 2016 8:04 AM  

RE: Theodore Postol. He is infamous in the defense community for lying his fundament off about missile defense in a very clever way--specifically, refuting his claims would require the disclosure of classified information regarding capabilities and limitations of various weapons systems in service or under development. More than one observer during the Cold War managed to correlate his lines of attack with known Soviet intelligence objectives--i.e., once something had been compromised to the Soviets, he dropped that attack and went to something else that would result in another piece of classified data getting blown if someone wanted to prove him wrong.

I know, purest coincidence, I'm sure.

Anonymous mature craig October 07, 2016 8:07 AM  

There is bad art and good art. I dont care for the blatantly anti Christian art that seems to be highly correlated with public funding or at least used to.. like Mary with feces on it..although i have seen anti Christian art from private funds too like.a painting of bread line in the 1930s with hagard looking people and a the wording up top -Jesus saves-...just to name a few....now on the other hand there is good art as well.

Blogger James Dixon October 07, 2016 8:09 AM  

> Say what you will but I still like 'dogs playing poker'...

What's not to like? :)

Blogger al October 07, 2016 8:13 AM  

Ken Prescott, Thanks for that info. I don't know much about him other than the Ghouta episode and his youtube talks. I suppose it was the MIT credentials that lent his opinion some weight for me, and obviously taking credentials at face value is not always the best idea.

Anonymous It's not Art October 07, 2016 8:21 AM  

Not surprised. Always thought people were mentally deficient who liked this crap. "Look at the way he slung the paint onto the canvas, it's inspiring." Glad the fans are alive to see this come out.

Blogger Amy October 07, 2016 8:22 AM  

Along these lines...

I don't know enough about movements in architecture to say that it falls under Modernism, but l'Arche de la Defense in Paris is such an ugly site. Pitiable and sad. I was not impressed in the least with the structure; it sullied my romantic notion of The City of Light, famed for its history and as a center of culture for centuries.

Considering the neighborhood and denizens of la Defense, though, l'Arche has one fitting quality: it reflects the current dead uncultured environment of the people and place over which it presides.

I last saw it in 1993. Perhaps the area has changed, but I somehow doubt it.

Blogger The Kurgan October 07, 2016 8:26 AM  

Read this same article yesterday.
Only confirmed what I already knew.
And people call me paranoid... they have NO idea...

Anonymous Oye October 07, 2016 8:29 AM  

I was talking to a Lakota one time. He told me the white man's art was just another trick in his bag of magic to poach one of his away into oblivion - something that had been going on for centuries and still is. He said his people don't trust a damn thing they see that comes from the white man.

I guess these guys had bigger goals than just appropriating a redskin here and there. One way or another it was a battle against the reds.

Blogger Mr. Naron October 07, 2016 8:30 AM  

So, my Elvis on Black Velvet IS high art after all.

Blogger Ken Prescott October 07, 2016 8:31 AM  

RE: Theodore Postol. He is infamous in the defense community for lying his fundament off about missile defense in a very clever way--specifically, refuting his claims would require the disclosure of classified information regarding capabilities and limitations of various weapons systems in service or under development. More than one observer during the Cold War managed to correlate his lines of attack with known Soviet intelligence objectives--i.e., once something had been compromised to the Soviets, he dropped that attack and went to something else that would result in another piece of classified data getting blown if someone wanted to prove him wrong.

I know, purest coincidence, I'm sure.

Anonymous Oye October 07, 2016 8:34 AM  

@39

"Only confirmed what I already knew."

I've read articles by Muslims calling b.s. on modern art long back. I'm sure there were others also. You probably didn't have to wait that long to confirm what you knew.

Anonymous Joe Blowe October 07, 2016 8:35 AM  

to drop an aesthetic nuke on Communism.

Wrong. The target was and is the White Christian Middle Class throughout the West.

The CIA was founded by (((Wall Street))) lawyers.
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article30605.htm

Before that (((Wall Street))) created the Soviet Union.
https://www.voltairenet.org/IMG/pdf/Sutton_Wall_Street_and_the_bolshevik_revolution-5.pdf

The CIA simply followed the program created by the (((Frankfort School))) to use mass media of all kinds and "education" to wage psychological warfare on the Western Mind.

http://henrymakow.com/frankfurt-school-satanic-judaism-in-action.html

Anonymous Fran October 07, 2016 8:37 AM  

So..wait...Piccasso is not a genius after all?

Blogger Sherwood family October 07, 2016 8:38 AM  

The scammers got scammed:

http://www.thenewamerican.com/culture/history/item/15545-gramscis-grand-plan

CIA was played from the beginning. The Marxists were already inside the OODA loop because they'd already corrupted the "observe" part of the process with compromised information fed into the process by their moles in the system. Makes it tough to come to a correct decision and act. There's a reason James Jesus Angleton was chasing shadows in a wilderness of mirrors.

Anonymous Athor Pel October 07, 2016 8:53 AM  

"21. Anonymous VFM #6306 October 07, 2016 7:07 AM
I could have sworn that the art was funded by the Soviets to undermine the American aesthetic. How ironic that the wound was self-inflicted.
"


Cognitive dissonance abets confustion. Those that pushed modern art sought to induce congnitive dissonance. Yes the CIAssholes knew it would affect the West. They did it anyway. On purpose. Either they didn't care or they wanted that effect.

They use the Cold War excuse to appear noble when in fact they are professional liars.

This is not "self-inflicted", real Americans didn't finance this. The CIA and the rest of the alphabet agencies are not your friend. They work for the same people that are pushing globalism now.


You know, this is a good example of the lengths these assholes will go to. It should illustrate a basic truth, these assholes corrupt everything they touch. They can't help themselves. They're dirty inside and must make everything outside just as dirty in order to feel even a little bit normal.

Anonymous Hezekiah Garrett October 07, 2016 8:56 AM  

@30 Cassius Marcellus Coolidge was plainly skilled in his craft. And 'art' is just an old fashioned word, originally, for skilled craftsmanship.

Anybody who doesn't recognize the artistic value of Dogs Playing Poker, (any of them, but especially the first one) over and above ANY piece of AbEx, is not to be taken seriously.

They're either pulling your leg, or so decadently degenerate as to be unsafe around scissors.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan October 07, 2016 8:56 AM  

Of course we can always discredit and disqualify any cultural impact from the Left with a simple rhetorical jab: "It's political", "It's too political", "Politics has ruined it" insert NFL in the last example

Hell Scalzi's work is too political and all ate up.

Blogger tz October 07, 2016 9:01 AM  

Government sponsored Art or science. Mann is the new Lysenko.

Anonymous Athor Pel October 07, 2016 9:08 AM  

" Fran October 07, 2016 8:37 AM
So..wait...Piccasso is not a genius after all?
"


Picasso was a well trained and gifted artist. He was also a self-admitted thief of ideas and extremely opportunistic. There's a lot to admire about him and also a lot to deplore. Overall, not a nice man.
__________

"30. Anonymous Strange Aeons October 07, 2016 7:53 AM
Say what you will but I still like 'dogs playing poker'...
"


If you like that you might also like stuff by Donald Roller Wilson. Just do an image search on that name and you'll see what I mean. I met him once. He's just a tad eccentric.

Anonymous BGKB October 07, 2016 9:19 AM  

I always thought that the high price of many of these modern, abstract paintings was a clever way to move money around.

There is no reason it can't be both.

. "Look at the way he slung the paint onto the canvas, it's inspiring." Glad the fans are alive to see this come out.

I could see lesbians still buying the menstrual blood paintings

Anonymous CC October 07, 2016 9:20 AM  

Fran wrote:So..wait...Piccasso is not a genius after all?

That's a good question. Picasso produced great work but a lot of stuff that he did just really seemed phoned-in, especially later on. If you look at the stuff he did when he was starting out it's clear he was, or would've been, a match for any of the greats from previous eras if forced to work under the rules of their times to survive.

https://uploads4.wikiart.org/images/pablo-picasso/first-communion-1896.jpg

He was also hugely energetic and creative and when that was matched with his talent and early risk-taking it helped make him into the quintessential modern visual artist.

Regarding what was produced during modernism, it wasn't all bad, lots of it was quality; creative work that explodes conventions and which fuses cultures and ideas can sometimes be tremendous and exciting when it's done well. Think of some of the eras in movies and music, you might not like the politics or ideas, but you can't deny the power. I suppose this is why pop culture is so ripe for manipulating Western Society, especially when it exults personal freedom.

The problem is that continuously demolishing values in the name of progress can and probably will lead to a death spiral, just like every other aspect of civilisation. I quite like some abstract expressionism, it's not without merit, I Pollock's drip paintings and I even thought Rothko's paintings had power when I saw them in person. But there's practically nothing around today that makes any impression on me at all. Pretty much like everything else in modern mainstream pop culture. It just seems to get worse and worse, because in the end there's no content. There's nothing to provoke and rebel against anymore and it becomes clear that it's not there to create but only to destroy.

The magic of breaking down barriers has only led us to a new hegemony and authoritarianism, thanks to SJW convergence and unrealistic academic theories.

As to the term genius, this is just another way of hoodwinking the public, "art" and "artist" are also words akin to sticking lipstick on a pig. What many artists create and how it's explained is designed to confuse so it won't be questioned.

And I'm also inclined to believe that money laundering is a big part of it.

Blogger Bodo Staron October 07, 2016 9:20 AM  

Vox, there is a book on this subject called "The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters" from Frances Stonor Saunders.

Blogger al October 07, 2016 9:21 AM  

Miles Mathis also wrote an article claiming that pi=4 for moving objects. That's pretty looney, though his art laundering article was good.

Blogger seeingsights October 07, 2016 9:27 AM  

The state distorts intellectual life. Our colleges are either state owned or funded indirectly by the state (through govt backed student loans ) . These colleges produce relativism, liberalism , socialism. I'm reading about nationalism for a book I'm writing, and I see no contemporary academics advocate nationalism. Most academics are globalists.

Anonymous BGKB October 07, 2016 9:32 AM  

Speaking of trusting your lying eyes; election results may not be all that they seem...

That is from Sept 30th, how did it manage to be a local story up till this point?

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 October 07, 2016 9:35 AM  

Basically, when they aren't torturing children into dissociative disorders in order to create the perfect spy, they were funding projects like "Piss Christ".

They need to be taken down. They are not American, they are now merely a government funded corporation.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 October 07, 2016 9:37 AM  

The Kurgan wrote:Read this same article yesterday.

Only confirmed what I already knew.

And people call me paranoid... they have NO idea...


And this is the tip of the iceberg of evil when it comes to the CIA. I mean, there was MKUltra and I've heard that Anton LeVay, founder of the Church of Satan, was a CIA handler.

Blogger Phillip George October 07, 2016 9:38 AM  

https://www.artrenewal.org/?m=201609

thanks for posting this Vox.

I read about the art renewal org on this site and it is worth reposting it here/ today.

It certainly makes sense that the promotion of crap was a feature of the long march. Having shot themselves in both feet however didn't 'defeat" Russia.

Anonymous BGKB October 07, 2016 9:40 AM  

There is more dead voting documented http://www.dcclothesline.com/2016/10/06/dead-people-and-illegal-immigrants-are-being-registered-to-vote-all-over-america/#more-64870

Anonymous CC October 07, 2016 9:42 AM  

al wrote:Miles Mathis also wrote an article claiming that pi=4 for moving objects. That's pretty looney, though his art laundering article was good.

Yeah, he tries to go after modern theorectical science as well and tries to show it's also been distorted and co-opted. Most of it is beyond my pay grade but it's interesting how he describes how the reigning orthodoxy in the science world (just like the art and other worlds) can never be questioned. He also thinks all the recent discoveries such as things like the God particle are all bullshit to help prop up a standard model that simply doesn't work.

Anonymous Trimegistus October 07, 2016 9:49 AM  

This is the kind of thing I mean when I say sometimes the "alt-right" looks like Leftist dingbats wearing heavy-metal T-shirts. It's Lefties who get hysterical (in the literal sense) about the CIA. It's Lefties who wanted the US to just roll over during the Cold War.

You know what I think about this "shocking revelation"? I think it's great, on a number of levels. First, good to know the CIA didn't fuck up absolutely everything it ever tried. My taxes aren't being wasted. Second, good on them for sticking a thumb in the eye of Socialist Realism art. God, can you imagine looking at that shit day after day? Third, it's fucking hilarious to see the Lefties reacting to this, and that always brightens my day.

Unclutch your pearls, Vox.

Anonymous KPP October 07, 2016 9:57 AM  

@28

While Snopes often displays their rather biased views in their articles, it does appear that they actually got one right on the inaccuracy of this one. The image on the Christian Times Newspaper web site has obviously been doctored - look at the "Ballot Box" writing: it doesn't lay properly across the side of the boxes, a hack Photoshop job by someone who doesn't know about the Skew function that would make it look right. That alone is a giveaway, but for Snopes to uncover the original image from an election in the UK in 2015 is pretty much the nail in the coffin. Unless the Birmingham Mail is in on the fix and doctored their web site... you never know how far Hillary will go, you know.

http://www.snopes.com/clinton-votes-found-in-warehouse/

Blogger VD October 07, 2016 9:59 AM  

lots of it was quality; creative work that explodes conventions and which fuses cultures and ideas can sometimes be tremendous and exciting when it's done well.

Excitement is neither truth nor beauty. It isn't art. It's rock-n-roll. Exploding conventions is literal child's play.

A crazy photographer I used to date took pictures of herself and two of her girlfriends holding rifles and wearing cowboy hats, boots, and nothing else. She said, "I'm mocking violence".

I just shook my head and told her, "violence will not be mocked". She killed herself about 12 years later.

Blogger Mr. Naron October 07, 2016 10:07 AM  

Rock-n-roll is 99% feeling and 1% art. But that 1% separates it from hip hop.

Anonymous Galactic Starfleets of Deplorable Spartacus October 07, 2016 10:14 AM  

VD wrote:I just shook my head and told her, "violence will not be mocked". She killed herself about 12 years later.

Dark. Like something from the pages of The Nine Laws.

Blogger Johnny October 07, 2016 10:19 AM  

I have resolved not to care if it is "art" or not. If it is something I would like to see somewhere: on my wall, in a movie or in a park, then it gets a pass as good. Otherwise not good. Screw is it art; high art, low art, whatever art.

Anonymous Rezny October 07, 2016 10:21 AM  

@63
I fail to see how it was in any way harmful to Soviets.
Khrushchev saw "the modern Soviet avantgarde", literally called it all shit and its authors he called faggots. And that was it, not a single Jew was sent to the uranium mines or anything.
Common Soviets didn't see it at all, except in maybe some propaganda about oh degenerate West.

If your taxpayers paid millions to allow Khrushchev to call some Jews faggots while degenerating as a people meanwhile, well good for you.

Blogger John Wright October 07, 2016 10:21 AM  

Funny; I had heard from years back that the KGB funded art projects that were also abstract, expressionistic, Dadaism, and absurdist in order to undermine the moral core of the West, which needs beauty in art for refreshment.

That both sides were funding ugliness is not a surprise.

Robert Heinlein called it "the cult of the phony" and predicted it would die out before the turn of the century (a prediction he later expressed disappointment did not come true).

Let me also recommend the art renewal center:

https://www.artrenewal.org/

And this documentary

http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/why-beauty-matters/

Blogger Johnny October 07, 2016 10:23 AM  

Now as for money and art. Give a work of art to a museum and get a tax break in the form of a charitable contribution. No money passes hands and an appraiser sets the value. Big tax break; no money passes hands; not a bad system.

Bet ya if the tax break went away the stuff would fall in value 90% for sure, maybe 99%. You citizen really want to pay millions for a line drawing, even if it is by Piccasso?

Anonymous BGKB October 07, 2016 10:26 AM  

This must be a Friday document dump. Were they dump news they don't want people to know on Fridays so they can say its old news when people find out.
https://www.yahoo.com/news/m/0bc0054c-3256-36b8-acde-292391512c11/ss_yahoo-ceo-marissa-mayer-led.html
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer led illegal purge of male employees, lawsuit charges

Just last week it came out she just gave full access to all emails to the CIA.
http://www.anonymousconservative.com/blog/fedguv-intelligence-was-perusing-yahoo-emails/

Blogger Unknown October 07, 2016 10:26 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger VFM #7634 October 07, 2016 10:26 AM  

I find modern atonal music to be far worse. Modern art just looks weird. Modern music gives you a headache, or at best leaves you very unsatisfied.

Blogger Johnny October 07, 2016 10:29 AM  

I am from a rural area. A few miles from where I live some years ago a high class purebred Holstein cow sold for $1,600,000. In current money it would be three million or more. And then congress took away the tax break associated with animals sold for breeding purposes. After that the most you could get for a cow was twenty thousand and I don't know if that held. In short around 98% of the million plus cow value was wrapped up in one or another money making scheme.

I wonder. If there were no covert money stuff in the background, what would the hundred million dollar plus art works be worth?

Anonymous Ironsides October 07, 2016 10:30 AM  

Strange Aeons wrote:Say what you will but I still like 'dogs playing poker'...

Put me down as another appreciator of "Dogs Playing Poker."

I always thought that the Soviets were behind this b.s. modern art, too. And the Marxists in general. In fact, it basically began with the Dada movement during World War I, which was radicalized Cubism. Later on, the modern art movement became part of the general Marxist attack on the West's culture, which, unfortunately, worked.

If the CIA tried to use modern art in return against the Soviet Union, then they pretty much failed -- probably in large measure because the Soviets were consciously using it as a weapon against the U.S. and western European countries, and thus were highly unlikely to fall for the exact trick they were deploying themselves.

Just like feminism still basically hasn't taken much hold in Russia. The fact that they used it against us immunized them pretty effectively against it.

Anonymous EH October 07, 2016 10:31 AM  

CC wrote:

www.mileswmathis.com


I was going to mention Miles Mathis. Intelligent, iconoclastic and a great artist. His analysis of the Manson-Tate operation was mind-bending and convincing, but I don't buy his Kennedy assassination theory (that JFK faked his death and ran the US behind the scenes until his natural death, then RFK did the same) and his physics stuff is total BS. He's worth a read, though.

Blogger E. Harris October 07, 2016 10:34 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Anonymous TheyCallMeDocterLove October 07, 2016 10:34 AM  

"You know what I think about this "shocking revelation"? I think it's great, on a number of levels. First, good to know the CIA didn't fuck up absolutely everything it ever tried. My taxes aren't being wasted. Second, good on them for sticking a thumb in the eye of Socialist Realism art. God, can you imagine looking at that shit day after day? Third, it's fucking hilarious to see the Lefties reacting to this, and that always brightens my day."

Our response to Eastern/Soviet Marxist art was to inflate the production of Western/Cultural Marxist art.

Stalin, for his many faults at least had the good sense to declare the Frankfurt school "cosmopolitan" and expel these people from the USSR in the 20s.

Soviet realism is tainted by it's political motivation, and how it tries to present reality better than it really is. But even that is superior to AbEx, of which the Frankfurt school would wholeheartedly approve. Bertolt Brecht's goal in writing plays was to make the aundience feel demoralized and aimlessly angry - the goal of all (((Frankfurt))) art is demoralization and Verfremdungseffekt (Alienation effect). Everyone must feel atomized - man alienated from G-d, from the opposite sex, from absolute truth, from civilization, and his historical roots; this is Art divorced from Science, and the geometries of what naturally appeals to the eye.

I've read (I can't remember source, and haven't been able to relocate it, perhaps a Revilo Oliver essay) that the Falangists would sometimes put captured Reds into rooms with abstract art on all six sides. Supposedly after a few days they'd lose their minds, having nothing to intake but the irrational, meaningless, and jarring. Pollock, mentioned in the article, suffered a nervous breakdown from his work, Kandinsky did as well. It would be interesting to know how many others suffered the same from staring into the Abyss a little too long.

We weren't poking the Soviets in the eye, so much as unleashing canisters of phosgene and having it blow back towards our own lines.

Anonymous TheyCallMeDocterLove October 07, 2016 10:36 AM  

Edit: Soviet realism is tainted by it's political motivation, and how it tries to present reality better than it really is **in the service of a totalitarian state**

Anonymous Rezny October 07, 2016 10:39 AM  

@72
"Just like feminism still basically hasn't taken much hold in Russia. The fact that they used it against us immunized them pretty effectively against it."
You're mistaking. It did take hold. It just happened 90 years ago, 20'es in Soviet Russia were a parade of degeneracy for those who wanted it. The Slavic golddigger phenomenon is an echo of a past epoch.
Anti-fag laws and such come from Stalin's mid-term as a survival measure, just like phony Soviet nationalism (Great Patriotic War and such).

Technically women here have the same privileges as yours, the thing is that they don't use it because few can survive without men, who constantly need their feminine support so as not to degenerate themselves. Some tens of thousand families from the two capitals aside.
Because the State has zero interest in women (well, in anything aside from its immediate survival and syphoning value), women have really small incentives to attack their own men (thus shooting themselves in the foot) or other women's men (thus provoking a rabid response from a female dependent on the man attacked) - nothing to gain, even if the possibility is there.
When degeneracy leads to financial and then physical death, even trash women tend to behave most of the time.

Anonymous Ironsides October 07, 2016 10:50 AM  

@77 Excellent insights, sir.

@79 True, the Soviets did go through a period of degeneracy. They were able to pull themselves out of it, though, due to the fact that the totalitarian structure, disgusting though it was, kept men in control.

Here in the West, the "liberated" women proved to be a superb vector for the lethal cultural marxist virus because there was no legal method whereby men could rein them in, leading to today's blue-haired SJWs and their orbiting cucks. I'm of the opinion that any renewal of the West will have to entail returning social and cultural power to men, who are naturally programmed to be tribalists/nationalists.

But yes, you're correct, I oversimplified. The Soviets basically got an early dose of feminism and said, "Bog pomoch, this is awful stuff -- let's inflict it on the damn capitalists, heh heh!"

Blogger residentMoron October 07, 2016 10:52 AM  

@Minecraft Chuck

The "intelligence" agencies always had more in common with each other than with anyone else. Given they're professional liars, maybe it's no coincidence they were running the same scam?

Blogger pyrrhus October 07, 2016 11:15 AM  

O/T Publius Decius Mus on the latest AEI treason...http://amgreatness.com/2016/10/03/case-conservative-case/

Anonymous Gen. Kong October 07, 2016 11:18 AM  

We weren't poking the Soviets in the eye, so much as unleashing canisters of phosgene and having it blow back towards our own lines.

Yes, that sounds like government employees at work as usual. Not even as useless as tits on a hog. but downright toxic.

Blogger Feather Blade October 07, 2016 11:24 AM  

Frank Lin wrote:Hmm... about the time this was hapleneing... I wonder if it caused a brain drain of talented, realist artists into comic books, pulps, and eventually games?

That's what happened to most of our good orchestral composers: they went into TV, movie, and videogame soundtracks.

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer October 07, 2016 11:27 AM  

Pretty much like everything else in modern mainstream pop culture. It just seems to get worse and worse, because in the end there's no content. There's nothing to provoke and rebel against anymore and it becomes clear that it's not there to create but only to destroy.

Read an article a few years ago about just how degenerate modern "art" had become. On example that has stuck with me was an "artist" hired by a wealthy New York socialite to create original art for her Manhattan apartment. This guy was getting paid big time bucks. One of his pieces was a heap of hard candies wrapped in cellophane on the floor of the entrance to the apartment that was a few feet high. The artist said it was an audience participation form of art because people coming into the apartment were supposed to take a piece of the candy and eat it. The owner was supposed to replenish the pile as it was depleted.

Money laundering is the only possible explanation. That "artist" must have been a drug dealer.

Anonymous Gen. Kong October 07, 2016 11:29 AM  

Bogey wrote:@19 the ugliest buildings in human history, brought to you be the Bauhaus, thank you Europe.

I dare say that the Stalinist 'wedding cake' architecture found in Russia and in the old Warsaw Pact would rival or even exceed Bauhaus in its sheer massive ugliness. The Art-Deco-Fascist style of government buildings from the era of the FDR puppetry is pretty damned ugly too. But hey, we have the Holy Temples of the Holocaust® and of the Golden Dindu right on the mall in Sodom-on-Potomac. USA! USA! USA!

Blogger EscapeVelocity October 07, 2016 11:32 AM  

And the Commies got the last laugh.

Blogger praetorian October 07, 2016 11:33 AM  

creative work that explodes conventions and which fuses cultures and ideas can sometimes be tremendous and exciting when it's done well.

All 'bout them tingles, eh?

Great art doesn't need to explode anything, it stands on its own.

Hanns Johst's Browning did nothing wrong.

Blogger EscapeVelocity October 07, 2016 11:33 AM  

And the Commies got the last laugh.

Anonymous Ironsides October 07, 2016 11:39 AM  

Feather Blade wrote:Frank Lin wrote:Hmm... about the time this was hapleneing... I wonder if it caused a brain drain of talented, realist artists into comic books, pulps, and eventually games?

That's what happened to most of our good orchestral composers: they went into TV, movie, and videogame soundtracks.


It often seems like the better sci-fi and fantasy art is the last repository of the noble, the beautiful, or the sublime.

Now that you mention it, soundtracks do sometimes have a similar feeling about them -- orchestral and moving, rather than discordant and ghastly, or mere thumping and howling.

Anonymous Illnoize Negro Church Ladies' Graveyard Society October 07, 2016 11:43 AM  

BGKB wrote:There is more dead voting documented dead-people-and-illegal-immigrants-are-being-registered-to-vote-all-over-america

We be fo' her. Honky muthafukkah.

Anonymous I Am Irony, Man October 07, 2016 11:48 AM  

From the original 1995 Independent article:

"We wanted to unite all the people who were writers, who were musicians, who were artists, to demonstrate that the West and the United States was devoted to freedom of expression and to intellectual achievement, without any rigid barriers as to what you must write, and what you must say, and what you must do, and what you must paint, which was what was going on in the Soviet Union."

Ah, the times they are a-changin'.

Blogger Amy October 07, 2016 11:49 AM  

For all his gamma-ness, Goodkind treated this issue well in Faith of the Fallen.

Richard, as a prisoner in Jagang's communist utopia, is commissioned to sculpt a piece of public art that is intended to be wretched and ugly. Instead, in a Randian moment of Objectivist truth-saying, he sculpts unimaginable beauty and dignity, then destroys it in front of everyone, thus pulling the scales from their eyes.

As for Rand, I'm glad I encountered Her work and Objectivism, as they were critical starting points for me, though I've since left them behind. She appeared to love Modernist culture and certainly it's values.

Blogger glad2meetyou October 07, 2016 11:51 AM  

The CIA endorsed jihad against Communism also. How did that turn out?

Anonymous paleopaleo October 07, 2016 11:53 AM  

Vox: ..."It isn't art. It's rock-n-roll."

Taxonomy is important. I prefer Vivaldi to Twenty One Pilots. Would be funny to argue that Vivaldi is better than 21P. Apples to oranges and all that.

In terms of truth, the Modernists believed they were seeking it more honestly than the traditional academic painters. Again, I prefer any of Titian's nudes to Manet's Olympia but Manet was the beginning of painting as rock n' roll. He started the movement of painting being about the form of painting (rules of painting) which culminates a century later with pure form. Existential purity.

A "true" painting not an illustration of truth or an illusion or an allusion to truth, but the thing itself. A true record of action.

That period in painting from the 1860's to the 1950's is quite interesting and I would argue full of truth.

Blogger John Wright October 07, 2016 11:59 AM  

"I've read (I can't remember source, and haven't been able to relocate it, perhaps a Revilo Oliver essay) that the Falangists would sometimes put captured Reds into rooms with abstract art on all six sides. Supposedly after a few days they'd lose their minds, having nothing to intake but the irrational, meaningless, and jarring."

Wasn't there a scene in THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH where Mark Studdock is subjected to exactly that form of brainwashing?

The real point is that beauty points to Heaven. Christopher Hitchen's brother was converted to Christianity by looking a work of art that transported him.

The godless communists as well as the worldly materialist and secular men in the West have a common foe in God. Beauty is an ally of that common foe.

Anonymous paleopaleo October 07, 2016 12:04 PM  

@ JW,
G.W.Bush blasted terrorists with Metallica 24/7 as torture. I like Metallica, but even I'm done with them after a 90 minute concert.

Anonymous Gen. Kong October 07, 2016 12:10 PM  

VFM #7634 wrote:I find modern atonal music to be far worse. Modern art just looks weird. Modern music gives you a headache, or at best leaves you very unsatisfied.

All part of the same (((Frankfurt Schul))) strategy. What? You don't enjoy a bit of Schoenberg and Boulez with your morning coffee? Perhaps some Stockhausen and Hans Werner Henze?

Anonymous Gen. Kong October 07, 2016 12:16 PM  

glad2meetyou wrote:The CIA endorsed jihad against Communism also. How did that turn out?

Quite successfully. Would we be able to enjoy the blessings of Department of Homeland Security whose HNIC was named after an African warlord today had it not been for the tireless efforts of hard working government employees working to whip up the Musloids to be in touch with their inner Moohammed? Would Juan 'Batshit' McAmnesty, the Zombie Incitatus of Arizona be able to serve as Adrmiral (Rear Admiral, lower half) of the ISIS Navy? Get on your knees and thank Golden Dindu for your blessings!

Anonymous mature craig October 07, 2016 12:38 PM  

If it makes you feel happy or influences u in any kind of positive way art has value. Sometimes the smallest little thing can make your day

Anonymous MMX2010 October 07, 2016 12:40 PM  

I went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the thing I hated most about modern art was that it depicted exactly zero people.

Compared to the beautiful facial expressions and human stories of Pierre Auguste Cot's "Spring Time" and "The Storm", modem art is just garbage.

Anonymous CC October 07, 2016 12:51 PM  

Excitement is neither truth nor beauty. It isn't art. It's rock-n-roll. Exploding conventions is literal child's play.

Yes, I agree with you. While contemporary art-whether it's conceptual, ironic or provocative-can be interesting on some levels, it all just feels just as hollow (and depressing) as so many Hollywood movies. What I meant by breaking conventions was that I think there was worthy work made during the time of Modernism (ca. 1870-1930). Many of the artists and movements of that time (Munch and Van Gogh are among my favourites) pushed the boat out by taking inspiration from other cultures (Japanese printmaking or African folk art for example) and developing from preceding movements. It was exciting, but they still retained many of the old forms and ideals. The problem with continuous iconoclasm and artistic revolution is that it leads you to ever decreasing circles and you eventually end up with nothing really. If they don't teach any of the old ways or techniques in art college (and they don't), how can you understand how good art used to be made or even how to break the rules properly?

So, I think the art-world was really exciting for a while, but after the 1930s/40s and the arrival of "post-modernism" it was a steep slide downhill. In hindsight, it does look like art's main purpose was to undermine Western Civilisation by tossing out all aesthetic rules, mocking all cultural norms and encouraging constant change. I'm pretty sure Marcel Duchamp didn't really give a toss about art, it was just his job to debase it and then he could go off and play chess. Today, every "important" artist seems to embody him. Clever, ironic, sterile.

I don't know what art is or how to define it properly, but one argument I always make is that the artistic value of something should be intrinsic to the work itself; you shouldn't need to have it explained to you. It should work by itself to touch you or feel truthful. And being radical is not artistic by itself.

Blogger cheddarman October 07, 2016 1:25 PM  

Another example of the government/Super Rich axis attacking civilization

Blogger cheddarman October 07, 2016 1:42 PM  

It seems as if the powers that be in the CIA that funded modern art bought into a version of the lie the serpent told Adam and Eve (Ish and Isha) in the garden, that they would become gods if they ate from the tree of knowledge. They thought they would would become gods by redefining beauty.

Anonymous Ain October 07, 2016 1:52 PM  

Using art to fight the commies is what they'll admit to. It's also been used to erode the west.

Blogger Thucydides October 07, 2016 2:00 PM  

The amin difference between this article and my understanding of the subject is "who" it was aimed at. Modern art, architecture, writing and so on is a Gramscanian attack on the West by attempting to distort people's values and understanding of beauty.

The main conspirators (if you can call it that) were the Frankfurt School cultural Marxists who fled Germany and were welcomed into the United States. They brought Antonio Gramsci's ideas of attacking civil society along with them (too bad they didn't miss the boat to the US, this is one group which should have gone to the ovens), and became quite influential in academic circles.

If the CIA was idiotic enough to fund this, then it just makes the problem that much greater, and the solution will have to be more far reaching.

Blogger praetorian October 07, 2016 2:33 PM  

And being radical is not artistic by itself.

Radicalism and the cult of creativity has very little to do with art. It gets things exactly backwards: the artistic geniuses can get away with being radical because they are so talented. But we now confuse a secondary effect with the cause, with a little help from our (((anti-representational, perpetually alienated friends))).

Here's the deal: our commie, totalitarian, left wing jews beat their commie, totalitarian, left wing jews. The visual and audio wreckage around us is the result.

I award us one civilizational cuckbuck.

Anonymous TheyCallMeDocterLove October 07, 2016 3:06 PM  

Ironsides wrote:@77 Excellent insights, sir.

Thanks

Gen. Kong wrote:Yes, that sounds like government employees at work as usual. Not even as useless as tits on a hog. but downright toxic.

Haha indeed

John Wright wrote:The real point is that beauty points to Heaven. Christopher Hitchen's brother was converted to Christianity by looking a work of art that transported him.

The godless communists as well as the worldly materialist and secular men in the West have a common foe in God. Beauty is an ally of that common foe.


I can relate to that transcendent feeling, it's what I get listening to the Pilgrim's Chorus from Tannhäuser. That, and Vox's example of a person who is Christian, but also unafraid to take logic to very antiChurchian and uncomfortable conclusions has done more than anything to pique my interest and have a deep consideration of Christianity.

Almost done with Awake in The Night Land btw - a great read!

Blogger Robert What? October 07, 2016 3:19 PM  

I guess the CIA strategy towards the Soviets in the 50s and 60s was sort of a form of "agree and amplify". They did their job so well that the Soviet Communist Party closed up shop and moved to the United States where they now run the government.

Anonymous Ironsides October 07, 2016 5:35 PM  

praetorian wrote:Here's the deal: our commie, totalitarian, left wing jews beat their commie, totalitarian, left wing jews. The visual and audio wreckage around us is the result.

Actually, I don't think our commie, totalitarian, left wing jews did squat to them. They pretty much did it to themselves with their ghastly economics and totalitarian wackiness. I mean, they took 6 times as much energy to produce a given object as the western countries did to make the same object.

Every tank they made, say, used up as much electricity, petroleum, etc. in the manufacturing as 6 U.S. tanks. Every car, every television set, whatever. It's no wonder they ran the place into the ground.

Mind you, I sometimes suspect that it's "all according to plan." The Russians divested themselves of their Marxists, but ours -- which they pretty much inflicted on us as a deliberate strategy -- are still fucking us over like some kind of long-term poison.

So, they jab the Marx virus into their enemies, sit back, and watch. The West collapses under a tidal wave of crazy women and brown debris, and the Russians waltz into the ruins, grinning. I'm by no means sure, but I wrote this to my dad a few weeks back:

Why do I get the impression there are a couple of retired Soviet generals somewhere, sitting around in a room with a spectacular view over some Russian landscape, helicopter outside on the private landing strip, saiga heads on the walls, some 22 year old Irina waggling in and out to bring them fine booze -- looking at a giant plasma screen TV, seeing the mayhem in Charlotte, and one of them remarking, "direct hit, Andrei."

Wreck your opponent's culture, then a couple of generations later walk in and take the place with hardly a shot fired. It would be a great way to get an empire, if you're ruthless enough to deliberately destroy White culture to do it.

Anonymous TH October 07, 2016 5:56 PM  

"You're not a philistine for preferring Truth and Beauty to CIA propaganda and creative prostitution."

Now he is an art critic. Please, do opine on the nature of AbEx, <<>>.

Blogger dienw October 07, 2016 6:00 PM  

Generation X began a new art movement in 1999: Stuckism/Remodernism.

Summary:

It is quite clear to anyone of an uncluttered mental disposition that what is now put forward, quite seriously, as art by the ruling elite, is proof that a seemingly rational development of a body of ideas has gone seriously awry. The principles on which Modernism was based are sound, but the conclusions that have now been reached from it are preposterous.

We address this lack of meaning, so that a coherent art can be achieved and this imbalance redressed.

Let there be no doubt, there will be a spiritual renaissance in art because there is nowhere else for art to go. Stuckism's mandate is to initiate that spiritual renaissance now.


Off the top of my head, I say that this connects to Kandinsky, Albers, and Klee. They are throwing away much art done from 1956 on; I state that because around 1955, meaning in art diappeared, especially in American art.

BTW, I had to switch from Brave to Firefox in order to post.

Blogger dienw October 07, 2016 6:25 PM  

Wasn't there a scene in THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH where Mark Studdock is subjected to exactly that form of brainwashing?

He was placed in a room with a stepladder and with dots on the ceiling; he was told to repeatedly climb the stepladder and touch one dot each time.

Blogger James Dixon October 07, 2016 8:27 PM  

> Now he is an art critic.

"Everyone's a critic."

> Please, do opine on the nature of AbEx,

Since when does a statement of documented facts count as opinion?

Blogger rcocean October 07, 2016 8:31 PM  

"The problem with continuous iconoclasm and artistic revolution is that it leads you to ever decreasing circles and you eventually end up with nothing really."

Exactly. If your new art is based on subverting, attacking, and riffing the old art, then pretty soon its all going to end, because its only popular because its "different" "New" "exciting". Once you've made a big deal over a white canvas or a big square, or random splashes of color, there's nowhere to go.

Tolstoy (in fiction) and others in the art world before WW2 saw this coming. They'd be surprised at how its still hanging on despite being 99 percent dead.

Blogger tublecane October 07, 2016 11:22 PM  

@86-State architecture of the FDR era tended to be neoclassical, not Art Deco. I don't know why you call it "fascist," because it was an international style. You find the exact same kind of 1930s buildings in D.C., Paris, Berlin, and Moscow. The most famous Big Government architect of the time, Albert Speer, was a Nazi, I guess. So I'll give you that. But I like Speer's work, though I don't know what kind of madness would've prevailed had they won.

Or maybe you're talking about something else.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash October 07, 2016 11:35 PM  

dienw wrote:Generation X began a new art movement in 1999: Stuckism/Remodernism.

Stuckism evidently wants to claim that Modernism started with good principles but got off course somewhere. They want to reclaim Modernism. And the examples on their home page render vivid proof that the basis of Modernism is, contrary to assertion, exactly where the problem lay.

Honest to God, that looks like a sale at a Jr High school art class.

Blogger tublecane October 07, 2016 11:40 PM  

@90-What you describe are made for mass audiences. That's why they're pleasant. The "art world" was tallied by Tom Wolfe in "The Painted Word" at, if I recall correctly, about 10,000 people in 8 cities. That includes artists, connoisseurs, sellers, displayers, publicizers, and so forth. The public is not invited.

I don't know how accurate is that number, but suffice to say more people are viewing donkey porn online right now. The only reason they have power, unlike the donkey gang, is that they have the money, they have the press, they have the government, they have the schools, and they have all the institutions of Official Art. Nothing else matters.

But art persists. It always will, in some form. As modernism ravaged painting we had "illustrators" to fall back on, like Maxfield Parish, Norman Rockwell, N.C. Wyeth, J.C. Leyendecker, Frank Frazetta, etc.

Blogger tublecane October 07, 2016 11:47 PM  

@63-I'd rather look at Social Realism everyday than Abstract Expressionism once a month. I understand revulsion at, or at least boredom with Social Realism. Heck, I don't much like Realism itself. But relative to the rest of Modern Art Social Realism is a breath of fresh air, despite the politics. Abstract Expressionism is truly revolting, and it's not even the worst.

Anonymous tublecane October 08, 2016 12:10 AM  

@95-I was at first confused by your post, because you seemed to be making Vox's point for him. You are describing exactly what's wrong with modernism. (Or part of it; I'll get to another part later.) That's not truth. That's just abstraction.

It's like a carpenter seeming the truth of woodworking by disassembling his table saw and contemplating the essence of metal teeth. He's way off track. The endgame for the process you would be not to produce art at all, but to talk about it. Or perhaps just to feel about it. Or kill yourself, because the world is messy and the only truth is in nothingness.

The real deal with modernism, however, is not that they abstracted themselves out of practicing art. It's that they couldn't have painted like "academic" artists had they wanted to. The Impressionists took over the schools and forgot to keep teaching the old ways, and within a generation no one knew how to do it anymore. True story.

No one within the institutions, anyway. The way you used to learn, by apprenticing in a studio, master to pupil, was still possible. There were still masters, and there are to this day, just not in the art schools. Not in the Art World, either, which has pushed out technique, as you say, for...I don't know. Painterliness? Abstraction? Anyway, you don't need to master anything to be a modernist, and to do so would probably hinder your career, so no one learns anymore. Except niche artists, like ones who paint for regular folks.

That's one reason modernism is a sham. You have to despise the academics, whether you actually do or not, because you couldn't compete on their terms. You are allowed to appreciate the Old Masters, because they are at a safe distance. No one feels bad about not being able to paint like Raphael (though he, in particular, does get denigrated), much like playwrights don't commonly feel bad for falling short of Shakespeare.

With the 19th century academics there's a political aspect, however. The Impressionists won, and that must be a permanent victory. Same way we keep seeing movies about WWII: because that's the basis for the current world order. We must be told over and over again how the fuzzies (one of my pet names for impressionists) beat those stuffy, old artiste pompiers.

I was indescribably angry when I started to learn the names of great 19th century academic realists and romantics like Friedrich, Bouguereau, Leighton, Alma-Tadema, etc. It's like there's a conspiracy to keep us from learning any of the great artists between neoclassicism and impressionism, nor counting the modernist-y ones like Turner or the weird ones like the Pre-Raphaelites.

Blogger tublecane October 08, 2016 1:38 AM  

@111-1955 is an arbitrary date. Is this meant to coincide with "action painting," or what? I have no idea when meaning left art, but '55 was way after Cezanne (crappy drawing) and Malevich (abstraction), who are my main culprits for killing painting.

But speaking of "meaning," whatever you mean by that, how can you take Duchamp seriously? "Readymade" takes the art out of art utterly, much more than action painting, or anything since. He passes for High Art, and he made it an explicit dodge, or con. There's no meaning in a con job.

That was before 1920. By the 50s the con game was old hat, in Europe and America.

Blogger tublecane October 08, 2016 1:52 AM  

I also read "The Cultural Cold War," maybe ten years ago. I didn't think any of this was revelatory, but I'm also out of touch with what the average person knows. I am still surprised by just how much high, middle, and low culture from the its heyday was tied to the CIA. So many names, publications, works, groups, etc. Boggles the mind. Feels like everyone you've ever heard of from mid-century was in on it, and not just obviously political artists such as Aurthur Koestler.

Not that you should walk away from such books thinking they're all just stooges. We might have known a lot them had the intelligence establishment never established itself. Just like we might have heard of various fellow-travelers and agents from a previous decade in Stalin's heyday.

It's the not knowing that gets to me. We live in a world of massive deception. I can't trust anyone or anything, it sometimes seems.

Blogger direita October 08, 2016 10:30 AM  

The CIA was founded by (((Wall Street))) lawyers.
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article30605.htm

Before that (((Wall Street))) created the Soviet Union.
https://www.voltairenet.org/IMG/pdf/Sutton_Wall_Street_and_the_bolshevik_revolution-5.pdf

The CIA simply followed the program created by the (((Frankfort School))) to use mass media of all kinds and "education" to wage psychological warfare on the Western Mind.

http://henrymakow.com/frankfurt-school-satanic-judaism-in-action.html

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