By Paul Virilio, Julie Rose
Paul Virilio lines the dual improvement of artwork and technological know-how over the twentieth Century, a improvement that emerges as a nightmare dance of loss of life. In Virilio's hot imaginative and prescient, paintings and technological know-how vie with one another for the destruction of the human shape as we all know it. at the beginning of the twenty first Century technological know-how has eventually left paintings at the back of as genetic engineers organize to show themselves into the worst of expressionists, the Human Genome undertaking their godless manifesto, the man or woman, the uncooked fabric for brand new and tremendous different types of lifestyles.
Virilio makes all of the connections transparent: among the best way early twentieth Century avant-gardes twisted and tortured the human shape prior to making it vanish in abstraction and the blasting to bits of fellows who have been not more than cannon fodder within the trenches of the good warfare; among the German Expressionists' hate-filled pictures of the damned and the "medical" experiments of the Nazi eugenicists; among the mangled messages of sensationalist advertisements and terrorism. A brutal good judgment principles this shattering of illustration: our methods of seeing are actually fatally formed by means of unparalleled "scientific" modes of destruction.
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Additional resources for Art And Fear
I have said elsewhere that genius is a way out, the only one left when all is lost. I say so again, specifying that organized cabal but rather as a tacit agreement between men who knew and understood each other well enough without direct contact or even correspondence, and certainly without a leader, to conduct a well-organized campaign; when one of them came out into the open and struck, the others knew what they had to do. This is what gives the Dialogues their true dimensions; though the aggression is obviously exaggerated, its reality must never be forgotten.
If apprehended in its relations to the seriality of readings, it seems to be a collective, a real index of social detotalization. Through it we measure the separation of individuals in an envisaged society; its mystery represents the false union of readers, each of whom is unaware of the other's thoughts. In our societies this may be the result of the creation of mass culture; in this case, as the words penetrate the person reading, that person internalizes his own solitude in the face of an impenetrable block of exigent sociality, without considering that this sociality is nothing but the detotalization of a collectivity as lived socially by each of its members.
The public itself, in this particular case, is the agent that transforms this false witness into a true witness of his time. And since the work's objectivity remains false in principle (there is nothing to prevent panoramic consciousness, immobilism, and radical misanthropy from being mistakenly adopted with the resulting familiar contradictions), its truth-its power to express the times-can come to it, through an external qualification which it internalizes, only from the times themselves. In other words, its false objectivity will become true in its very falsity if the various social strata that constitute its public see its past and present circumstances with false objectivity.