Saturday, March 25, 2023

This one has really gone all over the place

Of course. I should've guessed about the Tillmans piece. And then tweeting Joni Mitchell.
John Waters sent a birthday card to a mutual friend on his 30th birthday:  "Don't worry, you're still chicken."

John Kelly is a very nice man, but being a "Performance Artist"—pretensions limiting his audience and career—he disables embedding. But Joni Mitchell is a fan, and so am I. Click on the link.

And now I've covered almost everything, including contradictions. Only to add that Kelly is a craftsman and a traditionalist. His performance is conservative in the best sense, and he belongs with Welles, O'Toole, and Milton, linked below. Waters on the other hand is a bit of a nasty piece of work. And Jäger can't come to terms with his conflicts.

Jäeger and Leusder, Tooze and the rest of the younger generation of technocrats, earnestly engaged with "aesthetics" and "culture", always returning to romanticism, while elsewhere and seemingly unaware of the connection, expressing concern over and admiration for American individualism: Bowling Alone, and "the American experiment has just begun."etc.

Romanticism is the melodramatic longing of individualists for a mythical idea of community. Not recognizing or accepting that they're members of a group and following its codes, they form an intentional community, a subset of their group, an artificial imagined collective dedicated to aesthetics or politics, or a mixture of the two. The first absurdity—separating form from content, aesthetics from ethics—is compounded by the second: the joining of these supposedly separate things into a new unity. The result either way is kitsch, or close to it.

Technocrats as fans of art are just fans of themselves. 

Romanticism always begins in fandom and fantasy, the memory of the feelings another older artist's work brought out in the romantic poet's childhood. Thirty years ago I took a drum lesson from a working pro, a session player, who said I talked like someone who listened to music, not someone who played it. I want to think I got the joke immediately. When my father asked a room of freshmen how many of them wanted to be poets, half of them raised their hands. Then he asked how many wanted to write poetry.

Lon Chaney and a young Peter O'Toole. I'll post it a third time.

"Yes but the point is, surely… This is the point of blank verse, "The lady shall speak her mind freely, or the blank verse will halt for it."  Hamlet says this. You don't have to think; you think after the line, not before it, or not during. The line is the thought. This is the point of iambic pentameter."

Every time I hear the phrase "thought leader" I think of John Rawls.

Artists aren't individualists. The craft precedes the craftsman.  

I may have found a job I can work at if I need to till I die. A bench job is the closest I'll ever come to a desk job. But J.P. Morgan is sending me wealth management spam again, credit to the Norwegian not at Morgan who's handling my account; I may be able to retire after all. It's good having a billionaire for a stockbroker, even if he's working to make sure dividends cover my rent controlled apartment. Cultural capital is still the next best thing.

People pointing out that the Simpsons called the Michelangelo scandal should watch the episode.
Romanticism always begins in fandom and fantasy, the memory of the feelings another older artist's work brought out in the romantic poet's childhood.

Listening to the Hammerklavier as I do every once in a while and remembering that I laughed.

"A teacher of mine, Abe Ajay, an arch modernist, a friend of Ad Reinhardt who worked with him at The New Masses, used to complain that Beethoven ruined his music with images. 'All those wonderful notes and then... Birds!!'"

Beethoven like Marx, is sui generis. That's one way to cover my ass. But there is something to be said for being first to cross the a line. He doesn't refer to art; he uses art to refer to something else. That's in the manuscript. But also, now that I've checked, in The Classical Style, Rosen says he used art to refer to itself—as a modernist—which is the debate Rosen has with Brendel. That's in the manuscript too.

The first time I heard the Hammerklavier, I recognized a form—a historically and culturally specific set of arranged motifs—stretched up to the breaking point, but not over it. That tension is modernism. The moment of release is meaningless without what preceded it.

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