The oldest artist’s signature in Europe comes from a little fragment of a krater cup from the island of Ischia off Naples made in the 8th century BC.…Sign your name across my art
HEART ON A SLEEVE.
Put some iron on the wound.
The smell of blood will surely put you through
The pain from the stain that’s been festering in you.
Do you wonder which parts are true?
Melancholy smiles of the blackest blues
That play the heart strings a rapturous tune.
Or the simple pleasures that bring the crisis to bloom.
Or the way that you see others smiling and free
Come together and just be.
…the musings of a fool.
Roll away, roll away the dew.
This god-damned romance is just covering you
Just like the heartache when your lover comes unglued
Worked and jaded from the line you drew
To come around.
Wade to this side of the pool.
to the deep side of the fool.
Honestly, have you ever loved anyone deeper
That the one you loved before?
Have you never wanted more
Than to love the one that you adore?
Will there ever be a reprieve?
Wearing your heart on a sleeve.
Is there a false from a true?
Is there a me and a you?
These are the questions you surely go through.
Not to mention the pain
Once again –
Would you like a little salt on the wound?
Maybe a little deeper
Maybe some more room
To squirm and to thrash in the deepening ash
That fills the hole in your tormenting soul.
That spills onto everyone you know
Waiting to come around…
Just one flick of the tongue.
Makes you feel like you’re young again.
Just one finger in the hole.
It comes up stripped down to the bone.
Then you’re reminded of when you’re alone
Never minding who is there or how you’ve grown
Or how unselfishly they’ve invested all their energy
For you –
Only human is the musings of a fool.
One step forward two steps back.
Never quite knowing where your love is at.
Blindly reaching for a heart attack.
2008/2019 Lance A. Kair
Image courtesy of S Lynn Knight🎈 “heart on a sleeve”.x
The Artist (V)
The difficulty Philosophers and Artists might have with the notions of “art” and “fiction” may wish to consult the psychotherapist James Hillman. Particularly his book Healing Fiction.
In this book he outlines a distinction between history and fiction which is relevant to what Latour says of art.
Video: A Journey Through the Bowels of Jordan Peterson’s Phenomenology
— Read on writing809.wordpress.com/2019/03/10/video-a-journey-through-the-bowels-of-jordan-petersons-phenomenology/
I am an artist at heart, but with intellectual reflection. I am a philosopher in an artistic sense, rather than a ‘pure reason’ saint. My experience is not exclusionary.
Hence my dilemma. In not only thought, but indeed act. Where it becomes the most difficult is in our Post-modern Marxist world of production. There is no denying it; rather, the only way to deny the Marxist analysis is to limit what is whole to one or more of its parts. And yet, I deny it through the whole, as a whole.
I think this is the paradox of out current philosophical paradigm. Of course, if we can still see philosophy as divided into two camps, i.e. analytical and continental, then I appear continental. My problem, however, is exactly in the discernment between the two. For me, though I find myself immersed in continental understanding and usually prefer that style and approach, I am seeing that what is continental is but a sort of subset of the analytical ideal, using the same method of (capital R) Reason — but that discussion is for my books.
My wife is an artist, but is likewise what I call an activist: She’s sees her artistic ability as ethically involved with creating change, dismantling unbalanced power structures through actual engagement with people and groups. She is less theoretically bound than I am philosophically, though she is grounded in sure theory and authentic praxis. Able and willing.
If I might be so presumptuous as to frame my wife’s views: When I talk to her about my book or my music, her view is that the artist does not do art for the purpose of having it viewed by the multitudes. That the art is for personal substance, and that through this authentic substance it will be appreciated by who it is supposed to connect with, that by virtue of the art itself, its work will be accomplished. (Do I hear Heidegger?).
Sure. Yes. My wife and I come from similar artistic, generational and theoretical backgrounds.
Nevertheless, I am stuck then in a tiny world where I feel that my art-philosophy is taking place in a space that is much smaller that it is supposed to be working. I still feel that I indeed do art for people to appreciate. I want people to read it or listen to it, to interact with it and me, and to give feed back. Like a community –but admittedly, I am kind of one-sided. Again, the dilemma. But Im not going into all that right here; I am working on that.
This is my process. And it is not only my process but my philosophy. The two are not exclusive but are rather intertwined and inextricable from one another.
It seems I am caught in a condition that occurs as I am attempting to remove myself from it, as though I exist due to this contradiction, and not against it or revolting from it.
It is not a Sartrean Existential situation that I am involved with. The manner I am involved in that kind of Existentialism is through a rejection of its dictates; I am more in an actual complicity with its definitional regimen. Therefore, my situation is existential in, what I would call, a true philosophical sense, rather than a Reasoned philosophical definitional sense. That the definitional regimen of philosophy is a kind of philosophy which occurs as a condition of existence rather than a confining ontological structure of (big E) Existence.
If I must continue with the Existential bit — Existential angst is something that I no longer encounter, but is something that I am able to view. So it is with a particular kind of philosophy. I am involved with it, but it does not do justice to what is actually occurring.
And then: How do I go about authentically promoting and marketing my book?
That is the question.
What is the relationship between art and philosophy?
That is the issue I treat.
In “The Postmodern Condition”, Jean-Francois Lyotard speaks of this dichotomy in terms of ‘narrative’ and ‘scientific’ discourses. Emmanuel Kant speaks of the difference between Practical and Pure reason. And others also divide essential Being into dichotomous factions and never seem to approach the ‘final frame’, as Slavoj Zizek might (maybe) call it. While they are all most commonly understood to be speaking of different aspects (all of them) of reality or whatever, the significant issue involved with all of them is that they are really using different terms to characterize and position the same thing, the same aspect of being itself (that which is being itself). This is the issue that Francois Laruelle attempts to show us, that philosophy, what we might call ‘conventional’ philosophy, understands these divisions, these decisions, as indicating essentially real and localizable essences, what we may now call ‘objects’, but also a condition that no human being can get out of (No Exit).
The conventional philosopher sees terms as identifying actual distinct and segregate idealized (there is not situation that escapes what is of an idea) situations as these situations are indeed thus due to the manner by which clausal arrangements are made: Discourse determines reality because that is what has been argued successfully, and this argument thus can no longer be questioned without determining reality in a manner whereby reality is thus determined. This is called idealism: The idea is transcribed into reality because the idea is that the idea is able to be transcribed into reality intact (is the idea itself real?) But again, conventional philosophy cannot admit this generalization, or will vehemently as casually set it aside (whatever works), and will then move to discount its idealist situation by defining further terms and clausal arrangements. They simply cannot stop seeing ‘more things’, or simultaneously ‘the comparison of things’ in their use of discourse as these lineages of meaning are understood to extend through an essential temporal substrate.
See, though, that of course, this is not incorrect. It simply locates, evidences and positions a particular kind of thinking and the method that supports that thinking. The ability to find this philosophical situation thus, at once, understands that conventional philosophy views itself as a kind of essentialist science through its ability to situate itself above and around every assertion that is made upon it, to thereby deny that it is an idealism (religion); this type of maneuver once noticed cannot escape its scientific attitude, an attitude that ironically denies that it is any sort of science.
When we locate this situation, oddly enough, we have found an opening that places philosophy as an object; we are able to ‘see’ it as an object, and once an object can be located and defined for what it does (is something more than it does? IS more than AM? ), it becomes an object of science. This means that people are going to get nervous (isn’t this what we are already seeing?) . While philosophy will continue on in its conventional manner, there will be (is) another kind of philosophical manner that cannot help but supersede what has been traditionally the jurisdiction of philosophy as a whole kind of endeavor. This philosophy that moves beyond philosophy can therefore be called a kind of ‘science of philosophy’ and works to be able to define humanity in a manner that is better able to control and or first describe, then predict the outcomes of humanity even while humanity denies that it is being determined. The irony of this latter situation is that such control is not subject to the fears of totalitarianism or dictatorship (but neither democracy or communism) because such an understanding does not occur within the purview of real estimations; what falls into its purview will be checked by the regular political mechanisms which are around for any moment.
What in the past has been called ‘religious’, and then soon after ‘esoteric’, and then soon after ‘heretical’, now changes the stakes of the game. What has been the arena that these terms denoted has been dispelled (the term no longer ‘denotes’) in all effective ways save the enforcement of the meaning of the term itself: There is no ‘effective’ esoteric occasions but those which are defined within the general political arena as another political case, another political identity. What goes on behind closed doors is subject to the same rules as any other ‘closed door’ policy.
Due to this ideological upset that the concept of science brings about (along with its appropriate narrative support), the human situation is turned on its head and reality, by virtue of its ubiquity and omnipresence, becomes a religious institution. Once this happens, everything remotely ‘spiritual’ goes out the window into the the bin of science, yet even while it retains an effectivity within the meaning of the transcendental clause by which narratives afford, convey and maintain real worlds. What occurs then, is what otherwise would have been classified as ‘esoteric’ by modern analysts becomes the effective means to define parameters upon the human creature in such a fashion which moves beyond the ability for the real narrative to keep up with; power is enacted which does not fall into the modern ‘structural-Marxist-humanist’ designations for how power is supposed (proposed) to be used. As we have just said, what does fall into the lap of such analysts, regardless of what it means to such analysis, nevertheless functions to acquiesce data which is thus used to support the determinate scientific use of power upon reality. This is to say that what has been the problem of modern philosophy, that of what to make of essential difference and its interface, interaction or intersection, has been solved, albeit in a manner that leaves a particular mode of philosophical knowledge playing in the white wash despite its best efforts to paddle out into the monsters of Mavericks. Philosophy (conventional) becomes the means to make sense of what is already occurring, a manner to keep everyone calm and centered upon the practical business of living life, understood in the context of tradition though contingency, randomness, and the vicissitudes of free will. Religion is indeed the opiate of the masses, but to the extent that, as Giles Delueze might argue, knowledge of how this might be the case cannot and does not allow us to avoid its satiating glamour because within each attempt to overcome the oppressive and limiting aspects of our Leviathan, humanity functions to sedate itself through the very terms of its systemic freedom.
What is left is enacted by a contingent that, while recognizing the limits imposed and demanded, does not, as Zizek makes sense of the Buddhist philosophy of detachment, after all, totally comply with those limits, and indeed, lives a double life. Yet this one is not the conned apathetic agent of futility and happiness; on the contrary, it is the engaged and living aspect of the limitation itself.
There is a point, a moment, where Philosophy is split: one Philosophy continues in its traditionally real ontological approach and will see every discourse as a sign to be placed back into the correlational (real) limit; the other Philosophy sees philosophical statements as the material of a science, as it begins to show what philosophical statements establish, what they do as objectival acts, as things in themselves, behaving in characteristic manners to establish typical situations, that can be identified and predicted along certain lines of purpose.
This type of knowledge is deemed invalid in the narrative of reality despite every effort to validate it in narrative (the philosophical science is negated in the act of narrative) and so occupies a kind of knowledge that is usually categorized and classified as esoteric, but indeed is a science that is offensive to real agents of transcendence, which is to say, to practical reason.
This situation always is the case (see my book “The Moment of Decisive Significance” for the description example) as history may be discerned along lines of the relationship of this polemical constant over the motions of ideological climate and of their reactionary politics.
Rockers love to kill themselves. Not one to rally to towing the line, just grant me the sane human compassion for people who end up making the terminal decision and act on it.
I am going to present a view that I can imagine many will think insensitive.
But someone has to be able to address these things from a standpoint by which all the compassion gains its basis.
Soundgarden was one of the first bands that came out in my generation that was a signal that something was changing in music. I wasn’t so much into Linkin Park; in fact, I though it was (is) kinda wimpy (maybe that’s why he killed himself, cuz he knew it, but couldn’t help himself?).
Chester Bennington, singer of Linkin Park Singer and
Chris Cornel., singer songwriter of notable Soundgarden killed themselves recently.
Can we admit there is a certain kind of childishness that is perpetuated in pop culture, but Western (colonialist) culture in general ? Can you adults, and maybe even you younger people, recognize that much of the music that gets popular is, for grown-ups, merely a nostalgic replaying of childhood?
I remember when Punk Rock started to become normalized, or rather, when it became noticeably normalized: Grunge (what lead the way into what we now generalize into Alternative Music, if not the whole rock scene we know now), but it was really earlier when people realized that childhood rebellion was a way to make money (think Sex Pistols). Grunge was just the last ditch effort to reinstate a kind of musical legitimacy in childhood rebellion, and in full view of the irony of its situation.
Now we just view everything as potential commercial product. We allow the children their confused rantings of insecurity, indeed enacourage them to remain intheir childhood well into adulthood, because now we know it merely means childhood, and we probably figure that we can let them process their childhood in whatever way they want (even if it means their whole life long) and its all good. I would venture to say that it is because we all had our childhood noticed in the most commercial way yet for the time; our generation was the one that said it was now OK to commercialize childhood insecurity, to make their expressions recognized and permissible commercial products. We ‘buy ourselves’ over and over; perhaps this is symptomatic of a declining system: More and more the civilian becomes ‘adult’ by attempting to retain childhood, as opposed to relinquishing it.
But, one of the problems is that our generation, the one that is ‘mature’ now, has not relinquished their own childhood. They project their ‘lost youth’ from the nostalgia of the cute desperation of youth into the ‘all is good’ artistic therapeutic expression, and we all get to relive our youth vicariously through mass media.
So in a way, we allow for the occasional suicide of artists by systematically promoting artists to glamourize their innermost frustrations and insecurities. We must figure that a few sacrifices is OK for the ‘it is what it is’ goodness of the reality we create (or created). And it is indeed all good if we whole heartedly sympathize with the ‘lost artist whos life was cut short’, and morn systematically through the media that exploits the very event of desperation and suicide.
Now; the irony of this whole thing is that I am not making an argument that we should stop this or somehow it is bad; they already tried to apply some ethics to the ‘bad system’. I’m saying that it is indeed good that we recognize that childhood is filled with insecurities and confusion and let them get it out. As adults, though, we need to use this information more effectively. Rather than simply enjoying the nostalgia of our youth as adults projecting our left behind and unresolved youthful confusions for our children to play out again and again so we and them can make a colonialized profit from them, maybe we should use it more productively, see what information we can gather from such motions, predictable motions, so that we can better understand just what human beings do, and what exactly culture is and what it does.
Sure; enjoy our own misfortunes through others, but lets get practical about what is occurring — for the future humanity and their children.
Regardless of what ‘humanity’ people what to prescribe to, these artists were not living for themselves, unlike so much of their audiences.