Economies of scale come to pop art!
November 7, 2004 8:28 AM   Subscribe

All Pop Art. Do you like Andy Warhol pop art? Did you want your face to be on it? Is your narcissism overwhelming? I always viewed pop art as having a sense of irony, poking fun of mass culture. When mass culture then embraces and produces pop art based on themselves, is this a reflection of the apocolypse? I think this is similar to going back in time and meeting yourself.
posted by geoff. (12 comments total)
No. Pop culture will slowly eat anything you throw at it. You just have to keep with the new things to keep it at bay. Unfortunately by doing so you're also feeding it, but such is the balance of things.
posted by abcde at 9:57 AM on November 7, 2004

(I don't know if I actually agree with that, but that's the party line on this topic :P)
posted by abcde at 9:58 AM on November 7, 2004

When mass culture then embraces and produces pop art based on themselves, is this a reflection of the apocolypse?

[The party line from contemporary cultural criticism:]

This is more commonly referred to as what Baudrillard would call an 'implosion', but I guess I can live with 'reflection'. Anyway, yes, as culture becomes increasingly based upon 'reflection' rather than essense, all culture is merely a re-presentation of itself, and with each iteration loses more and more meaning, until all connection to what Benjamin calls the 'aura' - the original nature of the subject - is lost.
posted by ChasFile at 10:18 AM on November 7, 2004

It's perfectly appropriate, though, and I think Warhol would probably approve. I know someone who styles herself a big Warhol fan, not realizing that these days that's not a sign of sophistication. I mean, if you're being ironic when you casually mention Warhol in conversation, yeah. Otherwise, get yourself an print to go with your Che Guevara t-shirt and be "hip".
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:22 AM on November 7, 2004

no, the sign of sophistication is owning "the andy warhol diaries," having read it cover to cover, and using it for comebacks at parties where people don't know what the hell you are talking about. either that or having too much time on your hands, i'm not sure.
posted by grimley at 10:33 AM on November 7, 2004

the truly sophisticated could care less about the signs of sophistication.
posted by quonsar at 11:17 AM on November 7, 2004

With regard to themselves, yes. Others ostentatiously attempting "sophistication", however, is amusing in itself.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:44 AM on November 7, 2004

"When mass culture then embraces and produces pop art based on themselves, is this a reflection of the apocolypse?"

No, but at least it pisses off the hipsters!
posted by kavasa at 11:54 AM on November 7, 2004

It's simple economics. There's people out there with more money than brains and to have one's own image narcissistically emblazoned in the same manner that Warhol did Monroe? Hey if I had more money than brains I'd sign up for that in a heart beat. I like Warhol's Campbell Soup Can precisely because it's not hip or cool. I think it's funny. Did Warhol intend for it to be funny? I don't know. I don't care. I think it's a great laugh. Did Ed Wood expect us to take his work seriously? Who cares? Bride of the Monster is funny! Glen or Glenda is funny! Plan 9? Funny! These artists are no longer around to praise or bitch about what others do in response to their art.

As for the apocalypse? I would welcome it if it meant people would have to stop pointing at things that might mean the end of the world.
posted by ZachsMind at 1:26 PM on November 7, 2004

thats not art its craft and its crap.
posted by c at 1:53 PM on November 7, 2004

Art can't be crap? Craft can't be art? Crap can't be either? This isn't rock paper scissors we're discussing. Making art is a craft. They kinda go together. Crap is an opinion. One man's trash is another man's treasure and all that.

One can surmise that any object crafted is a work of art. Only when someone's willing to pay for it does it become valuable art. Think about that next time you put a bag of popcorn in the microwave. Is the popcorn art? The way the words on the bag were printed and organized on the page telling you not to burn yourself: is that art? The guys who made the microwave - the people who designed it - aren't blueprints a form of art? Or does something have to be aesthetically pleasing to YOU in order to be considered art? That's a very narrow, egocentric view.

Personally I think Picasso's crap looks like a kid barfed technocolor after a birthday party. Does that mean it's not art? I can read about Picasso's phases and what he was trying to accomplish and how all these other people praise him and blahblah blah. I don't care. His art is crap.

Moliere's eyesight was waning as he got older, so when you see his later stuff it's all blurry and out of focus and the colors run. A lot of his stuff you have to step ten feet back to get a good look at it. You get too close and it's crap. Step back too far and it's crap. So is it only art if you look at his stuff just right, and it's crap the rest of the time or is Moliere's artwork always art? And if you don't like his later stuff cuz let's face it the man was going blind so you can't tell if that's a lilly pad or a frog or what, does that mean only his early stuff was art or is it all art and you just can't see it?

I adore the Mona Lisa, but some people might not. To me it's art; to them it's crap. But it's always art. See what I mean?

Here's something to blow your mind. Next time you take a crap, look in the bowl. You just crafted that. It's crap. It's art. It's not valuable art and it's very dadaesque cuz you're gonna flush it down the toilet and it will cease being anything. Doesn't change the fact that every time you crap, for just a minute there, you make art. You are an artist, every time you doodie. It's even framed if you leave the seat down.

So if someone wants to mass produce Warhol like art, and there are actually people out there who will pay for it? That's not only art man, it's valuable art, crafted through a mass producing process. Warhol would not only concur with that but he'd applaud it. His whole think with silkscreening was about trying to mass produce art anyway. He'd really grok this. You may not like it. I may not like it. It's still art. Valuable art if money changes hands.

Ever see a kid selling lemonade? You're buying art. Go to a grocery store? Choose one kind of breakfast cereal over another? Pretty box? Interestingly designed little corn puffs? You're buying commercial art, man. If you diss this Andy Warhol thing, you might as well stop buying anything. Or crapping, for that matter.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:45 AM on November 18, 2004

Oh crap. I think I meant Monet. Moliere was a playwright or something.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:48 AM on November 18, 2004

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