intro’d to Steve here – via Richarld Wolff:
Does Capitalism Work? w/ Steve Lambert
when you are confused you look for something that makes sense.. and questioning makes sense..
the question isn’t if capitalism works in my life, or does it allow me to make money, but whether capitalism works
i’m much more interested when i think its something i can do, and when the economic situation is given as a given..
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Steve Lambert is an American artist (born 1976) who works with issues of advertising and the use of public space. He is a founder of the Anti-Advertising Agency, an artist-run initiative which critiques advertising through artistic interventions, and of the Budget Gallery (with Cynthia Burgess) which creates exhibitions by painting over outdoor advertisements and hanging submitted art in its place. Lambert’s artistic practice includes drawing, performance, intervention, culture jamming, public art, video, and internet art. He has worked with the Graffiti Research Lab, Glowlab, and as a senior fellow with Eyebeam Open Lab.
Lambert is member of the New York based artist group Free Art and Technology Lab. He has won several awards including from Turbulence, the Creative Work Fund, Rhizome/The New Museum, Adbusters Media Foundation, and the California Arts Council.
his site (showing the capitalism project):
Steve teaches at suny:
Utopia is a combination of three greek words; Eu (good), Ou (not), and Topos (place). Utopia translated is “good not place”. It is important to remember, as a “not place,” it is impossible to arrive at utopia. The reason we imagine utopias is to provide a point on the compass that orients us on our travels. Without utopia, we’re lost – we are traveling without direction, guessing and hoping that we are moving forward. The purpose of utopia is not a destination, it is to give us direction so we can progress.
The reason I became an artist is because I believe it helps create free human beings. It can show us other ways of looking at the world, other ways the world can be. It makes us more empathetic, more understanding, and more open. It helps us grow. I think the money behind ArtPrize is working against, what I see as, the spirit of art itself.
It must delight the powerful when we turn our scrutiny on artists, art organizations and one another instead of the powerful—especially those who use philanthropy to mask real damage.
Céline (@krustelkram) tweeted at 3:46 AM on Mon, Aug 21, 2017:
“Utopia is not a place we will ever reach; it is a space that helps us think about where we want to go.” https://t.co/69PA9sNVI8 @theC4AA https://t.co/TWKAqOFNZO
This article explains how Thomas More’s Utopia was designed not as a plan of an ideal society, but as a prompt to stimulate the reader’s own political imagination.
Our interest in Utopia is far from naive – it is based in a serious, grounded and realistic assessment of how power works, and why change happens. We will share our theory of power with you now:
the dominant system does not dominate because most people agree with it; it dominates because we cannot imagine an alternative.
Many activists and artists operate under a different premise that the biggest problem we face is that most people do not understand The Problem
perhaps trust that energy to take care of f e & w et al
To keep people down you need to apply constant pressure.
Even if capitalism, patriarchy, and white supremacy are doomed, it does not really matter if we cannot imagine an alternative. We believe that the job of artistic activists is to examine the present with a critical eye, but also to imagine and create a new world, and help others do the same. To conjure up Utopia or utopias.
The grandest and best-known paradox is the title itself. ‘Utopia’ is a made-up word, created by More from the Greek words ou, meaning ‘not’, and topos, meaning ‘place’. Utopia is a place, which is literally, no-place. The power of Utopia lies in its ability to be possible and impossible, real and unreal, all at the same time.
And then he takes it away by calling the whole thing No-Place. Why? More wants us to imagine our own Utopias. The problem with most Utopias, be they prophesied by holy men, imposed by political dictators, or envisioned by scientists on the pages of Popular Mechanics, is that the Utopias they propose are presented as The Answer. All the imagining and planning is done by the enlightened few and the job of the rest of us is to get used to it.
More solves this problem by refusing to allow us to believe in the possibility of his Utopia. He takes us there – lets us see it and feel it – but then reminds us that this place is just imaginary. He does not want us to simply swap our world for his alternative, so he makes his alternative impossible for us to inhabit. But it is too late for us to go home; we have been exposed to the idea of an alternative. We have been to Utopia, and once we can imagine someplace else, then we know that the world we live in today is not the only one possible. We can imagine another world.
To catch a glimpse of a different way of living and being can free us from this prison house of the imagination.
let’s model a nother way.. so that 7 bn can leap to – instigating utopia everyday..
Oftentimes protests or socially engaged art exhibits are attended as an obligation, the political equivalent of eating spinach.
spinach or rock ness
Utopia works differently. If well constructed, Utopia is something that people are attracted to
our goal was to help create a community that would organize themselves to realize their own dreams
and to re create everyday..
As the Marxist literary critic Raymond Williams once wrote, ‘To be truly radical is to make hope possible, rather than despair convincing’.
’The goal of the future is full unemployment, so we can play. That’s why we have to destroy the present politico-economic system.’
Arthur C. Clarke
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/SteveLambert/status/982057063130988544