2004/12/11

On Postmodernism (5)

Looking at present day visual arts productions, I can't miss to see an extreme variety of styles and there are definitely some works of extremely good quality out there. This does not mean that the art market has already discovered those present day pearls and their creators. Art merchants and critics have still to stick their heads out of the confusion that reigned master in the late 20th century. But let me be unambiguous. What I discern is a profusion of approaches as we never have seen in all of our history. "We're living in an extremely fruitful and exciting time for those captivated by contemporary art" says Dan Cameron, senior curator at New York's New Museum of Contemporary Art. "I've been in the trenches for 20 years, and there's more good art being produced in more places than I can remember at any one time. We're in a sort of Golden Age."
Is this for real? "In other words, is the new painting more about nostalgia - a throwback to a time of greater stability - or is it vital and original, shaking up one's assumptions and forcing the viewer to feel and think about the present?"
All I write here is about that question and my answer is unequivocal. We are entering a period of extreme depth of content and of technical excellence.
Is this going to last?
I have no clue about that, too many factors are presently at work: climate, globalization, social dislocations, scientific leap, cultural homogenization and political and cultural craziness, much will depend on the ability of the "world societal system" to stabilize and to integrate with the system of Gaia.

Looking at what's going on in the scientific world I see the same variety and richness as in the visual arts. I'm particularly trilled at the discoveries made in terms of the sciences of complexity for example. The sciences that study the emergence and transformations of life itself. The way I see it is in reality a convergence of modern scientific knowledge with the ancient Chinese philosophy of "transformation", of "change" that is bound to revolutionize our ways of thinking, our ways of understanding ourselves and our cosmos.
"Questioned on the future of time, the Belgian Nobel Prize of chemistry Ilya Prigogine tries to introduce the idea of uncertainty into the idea of time. This idea of uncertainty will perhaps be the marking fact of 21st century. Ilya Prigogine shows that the reversible laws of Newton relate to only one weak fraction of the world in which we live. (...) Do we measure enough the revolution which these discoveries introduce into the notion of time? Here comes the end of certainties: time does not have a future, but futures. Because nature is from now on unforeseeable: it is history".(1)

The future is the result of what we'll be making out of it. I mean that our inputs are making what we will harvest in the future. But what will be our inputs?
Surely not only the inputs of the western world only. 15-20% of the world population will not be at the steering wheel for eternity. The remaining 80-85% are knocking on the doors and making more and more vociferous noises. What I want to show is that the future can't be simply a projection of what is going on today in the West. It's a lot more complex than that and it definitely involves all the world, that means all the other cultures: Indu, Chinese, Arabic, ...

(1) "Jalons pour une ethique du futur. L'avenir du temps". Le Monde Diplomatique. Jerome BINDE. 03/ 2002. (translation, Laodan)

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