Anybody out there with half-a-brain? Just checking to see the consensus on Banksy’s Dismaland. You can use a pseudonym when you write so that you aren’t stoned to death and banished entirely from the contemporary art world for voicing a critical opinion. Or you can let me know why this stuff is so fantastic using your own words, if you have any.
Or you can chastise me for paying so much attention to this kind of total crap and not turn my minds to the higher things, like photo-realist painting or abstract grids or Jasper Johns’ Targets.
It’s at the top of today’s art world, written about with panicked excitement by art critic geniuses like Peter Bradshaw in “The Sheer Joy of Banksy’s Dismaland” (Is this irony? Is he perfectly serious? It could be both… It could be neither.. It’s so enigmatic!. … Bradshaw writes with the kind of devastating wit and critical depth that has gained him so much respect and prominence in art critical circles:
The attraction that sounds best has been devised by David Shrigley, a Turner-nominated artist for whom the word genius is not too strong. He has invented a fairground-type game called Knock the Anvil. You try to knock an anvil off a broad, sturdy pedestal by throwing tennis balls at it. The prize is an anvil. I think Shrigley’s brilliance consists in enigmatically declining to make it clear whether the prize anvil would be the one you are pointless trying to knocking it over. Or perhaps there are dozens of anvils waiting to be won.
Everybody else think Shrigley is a genius? Anybody else in the art world have a thought in their heads outside other than how to sell their work and keep up the pretense that art in 2016 has any kind of purpose or meaning whatsoever?
Grunt or tweet if the answer is yes.
No. This isn’t a vitriolic diatribe. It’s a recognition of reality.
Who out there thinks that the tireless self-promoters Bansky et Al, Inc. are doing anything whatsoever to change or destroy the system they’re so opposed to? Since Johnny Rotten’s role in Jesus Christ Superstar got cancelled with the production running out of money, why not have the Sex Pistols regroup to perform in Dismaland their bold and fabled attack on the Queen…. At least Johnny had the coherence to formulate something specific he was attacking. Is there anybody in particular that Banksy et Al, Inc. are attacking? Perhaps a Charles Saatchi or Cameron or whomever?
Awhile back Johnny Rotten was attacking Russell Brand for telling kids not to vote. Maybe Banksy et Al can put up a dartboard with Russ’s face on it.
Ah yes…. I missed the point. You’re attacking Walt Disney. Well, if Disney wasn’t the source of Evil in the Western Patriarchal Capitalist World I can’t imagine who else would be. He sure was a tyrant with his workers. Really demanding. Some neanderthal political beliefs. But compared to Jeff Bezos and his treatment of his workers and his neanderthal political beliefs? Come on, guys. Give Walt a break. Find a real target.
But apparently you’re all too brainless to find the real targets as I don’t see any appearing in your devastating critique of the “system.” And apparently you haven’t noticed capitalism is imploding and taking everything else down with it? Your attack on capitalism is about effect as a mosquitos attack on an elephant dying in the Africa from the permanent droughts.
So, Banksy, are you just like the other nihilists Bruce Nauman and his wife, one of the largest buyers of local real estate? What exactly are you doing with all your money… besides wasting it on self-promoting slag heaps like Dismaland? Perhaps set an example, like Oprah or one of the other pious celebrities, to get people read books? I imagine that many of your enthusiastic fans need some reading lessons.
I love how the deeply spiritual Agnes Martin and her brilliant pals Bruce and Susie live in the most poverty-stricken states in the US, but none of them have ever made a peep about the abysmal third-world conditions that persist there? I wonder why none of the ultra-wealthy artists and Hollywood people do anything but flit about in their glory living on their wealthy estates. When we attack the 1 percent, how is it that the big name artists and Hollywood royalty are kept out of the equation? Hedge fund investors like Steve Cohen is one of the evil 1 percent, yet all the artists he’s collected and promoted are brilliant geniuses we all admire?
I think if Marx were alive today, he’d change his formulation to: “Art is the opiate of the people.” I’m perfectly serious. The banalities of Koons and Hirst and everyone else in the art hierarchy perfectly reflect the banal tastes of the general public. The cutting edge nihilism of Paul McCarthy or Mike Kelly are pale echoes Walking Dead or True Blood. But presumably we’re supposed to think they’re reflecting society by telling us about who we are? It’s pretty fucking obvious who we are guys. Turn on a TV. We hardly need artists to reflect that do we? But thanks, Andy. Thanks for showing artists the way. The way to make some bucks.
Wow. What a country. Breathtaking psychopathic lack of empathy on the part of the ultra wealthy, which, yes, include all these brilliant artists. It’s great to see all the bottom feeder artists stridently opposed to the 1 percent by copying the 1 percenter artists at the top of the shitheap. It’s a wonderful world.
Anybody thinking about it out there? Scratching their heads? Wondering how the fuck did it come down to this? From JMW Turner and William Blake to the genius Shrigley making Knock the Anvil. And instead of a Ruskin they have dimwitted blockheads like Peter Bradshaw to explain art to them…. since Banksy and Shrigley are so enigmatic…
You ever notice how all the cutting edge comics never attack the capitalist system? How when Jon Stewart leaves the air he and Obama have a love fest? Ever wonder who else is part of the 1 percent besides the evil corporate bosses? You think any member of the 1 percent wants to see the system changed? Seems to be working out just fine for them.