And another very relevant text indeed, covering artists working directly within the theme of utopia or even working towards utopian visions. Covering the last decade whereby there appears to have been much renewed yet altered interest in the subject.
Olafur Elaisson: http://www.olafureliasson.net/studio.html
Fellow Utopian quotes:
“For me Utopia is associated with the now, with the moment between one second to the next”. “It constitutes a possibility that is actualized and transformed into reality… Our sense of orientation is challenged, and the coordinates of our space, collective and personal, must be renegotiated. Change and dynamism are at the core of Utopia”…
I could not have put this better myself. I feel Olafur has it on the nose. He also hints a certain shift in perceptions, precisely these reasons why I have, and will continue to quote information from Buddhist and psycho-analytical sources amongst others..
“A striking tendency in the art and art criticism of the past decade is a renewed interest in utopian imaginary.
“Contemporary art repeatedly touches on the utopia as a dynamic driving force for art, but it does not perpetuate the the ideas as art as the messenger of radical social transformation that were associated throughout modernity with the utopia concept. Utopianism continues to matter, but in a new way. Not as a ready made vision for a better society, formulated or brought about by art, but as a belief that art can inspire us to think beyond the existing- towards better ways of living and being.
I have highlighted this last passage in bold, simply, because, for me, and what I am aiming to achieve, it says it all.
This brings me to a point I would like to raise. Certainly this resonates with the failed ideas of Utopia’s of the modern age:
Being or making perfect. Perfect state. Perfect person.
Accomplishment, achievement, completion, consummation, end, fruition, fulfilment,
Realization, beauty, completeness, excellence, faultlessness, flawlessness, ideal, precision, purity, wholeness.
UTOPIA: Definition: Imagined perfect place or state.
I think the very fact that these statements reside within any current dictionary is problematic.
I have highlighted in bold, parts of each definition which I feel important.. Now, lets imagine a world, where, at large, human beings accepted that ugliness was very much a form of beauty. That sense of ‘true accomplishment‘ can arise from redefining your sense of the world and what is beautiful or ugly. That real achievement is that of acceptance of the world for what it is, yet never dismissing, it could be better, and thus defining your part to be played. That fruition, true fulfillment and good mental health can arise from the realization that socially acceptable norms, are mearley fabrications, man made. To some degree, completeness, purity and wholeness are attainable, yet most likely, outside of the social norms of our modern, contemporary society’s.
Perfection, for me, resides in acceptance, that everything must co-exist and be as it is, as one, a whole. I feel the art of utopian thinking is flexible thinking, at best, not thinking.
I imagine this place, therefore it becomes real. In Neuro Linguistic Programming, I believe this is labelled ‘positive projection’. Any entrepreneur will agree it to be a powerful mental tool.