Thursday, September 26, 2013


Two weeks back, contingent on and a transcendence of the modernist fulcrum, i postulated a form. Though my allegiance to the modernist paradigm is incontrovertible i felt that one could use postmodernism too, both as counterpoint and core, to posit the idea of the form i did earlier, only reconsidered from a fresher perspective and realigned with contemporary theoretical bases.

Fragmentation constitutes contemporaneity. Yet a desire for unity underpins it. To acknowledge that uncertainty is our only certainty is certainly perspicacious but incertitude, ipso facto, cannot be constitutive of the human condition. If stasis is the ineluctable accompaniment of having crossed a threshold then poststructuralism certainly demonstrates this propensity. Theory, in many contexts, is essentially circumlocutory and in thrall of its own ingenuity. It takes a measure of ingenuousness , however, both for implicit belief and a radical questioning. 

The idea of what art is and should be is a timeless query. Should be inveigles an imprimatur of the prescriptive and must therefore be disavowed. Nor will an hypothesis of what art is yield any answers. There can be anodyne overcompensations attendant on such a train of thought but leaves fundamentals unexplored. It can be, though a pertinacious asseveration that art should be about the human condition. But of what aspects, of which dimension and how profound? Is verisimilitude a precondition or extrapolation? Should proximity to accuracy be a criterion, no matter how deviant the constituents and forms the integument might inhabit? Or should truth be the inescapable centrality, given variation in form, genre etc. 

All these questions are unanswerable as are the constituents they embody capable of being severed and analysed. Having posed these queries and explored the intransigent unknowability of phenomena one can conclude, rather tremulously that art is both infinitely appropriable and infinitely configurable. There is no unalterable finality or telos. Therefore if art were, in conjunction with theory, though not seamlessly amalgamated, represent certain human phenomena might it not follow that it can repudiate those self same groundings and entrenchments and, through its own configurable epistemology, point the way forwards. Might not the self contained, complacent sheathe be split, cleft and rent and multitudinous possibilities burgeon and unfurl in myriad directions. 

It would be, having considered so far our critique of postmodernity, naive to pause at this interstice of asking and acknowledging and stop here. Such a course of action, such stasis would embalm the very incertitude we seek to go beyond . In the previous peregrination of understanding form the individual as collective was stressed and highlighted. It would, of necessity be inevitable that contemporaneity can not be our sole base, that postmodernity, though undoubtedly self sufficient, would leave untapped many humanist possibilities . This lack, this absence of a transcendent propels the need for a new form forward. Renouncing the zeitgeist would be foolhardy and importunate because it is from within it that answers must be wrenched. Hence an expedient traversing of its exiguities would be expeditious. The genre is irrelevant or relevant as a means to an end. The genre itself can be channeled as a way of tapping into the new form.

Of what then, would the new form consist? The new form is promulgated both as fluid and as totality. Today constituents of consciousness are being explored and it is unavoidable that the constituent, the compartment itself betokens to the larger collective depth. The fallacy lies rather in a totalization of the fragment and its further scatteration. A kaleidoscope of multifariousness reweaves diffuseness into a prefigurable whole. The whole itself is composed of fragmentary daubs. Yet it is out of these gossamer, inchoate filaments that wholeness is to be arrived at. Wholeness is to be seen not as self containedly reposing within and in the interleaving of these fragments than as a way beyond them. If we suspend or search for humaneness by acknowledging that categories exist and that attenuation is our reality we leave undiscerned the deeper current of what binds us. Art and the new form could go some way in addressing this nothingness.