josephine bosma on 28 Sep 2000 10:18:37 -0000

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[Nettime-bold] art and politics

>>the anti NATO protest by 'antiorp' during Kosovo war
>>(most compact example of this artist's radicality)
>Yes, how very radical of them to support the 'ethnic cleansing' of the
>Kosovars. I'm sure that Slobo and Mira were very grateful for their
>artistic intervention. What next: a cool 'n' trendy website for the French
>National Front or the German neo-nazis?!



Because nettime-bold had a bad time again the last few weeks, I did not
get any mails from nettime for a while. Hence my late reaction to
Richard Barbrooks 'funny' remark quoted above. 

Eventhough I agree that most of the artworld has neglected the social
and political aspects of the making and reception of art for a long time
(and this of course still happens), I find the tendency in certain
European media scenes to look at art from an ideological point of view
very dangerous. The quote above suggests antiorp supported the ethnic
cleansing of the Kosovars. That is pure 'bartalk', talk for over a few
beers, in my opinion. Artists have often reacted to blunt military
action from superpowers without taking sides. I find it totally
inappropriate to look at such work as if it represents political action,
and to judge it as such. It is criticism at the most, or an addition or
initiative to/for a discussion. That does not mean of course it is not
valuable or that it should not be taken seriously. Art is a difficult
but stimulating part of society. Without it there is no life as far as I
see it, only vegetating.

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