The Specificity of Blogging as Artistic Medium through the Lenses of lovearnotpeople.org

 

Pressure, tension
I’m pushing, but it’s getting harder
I’m so close, long road
Lord knows, I see it getting darker
There’s no give, there’s bruises
I’m losing, no, this is a disaster
When I feel low, I breathe slow
And let go, then give it to the water
Give it to the water
(These verses are from Give It To The Water included in Stormzy’s This Is What I Mean Album of 2022. Lyrics by Michael Ebenezer Owuo Jr.)

 

When this blog was written in Spanish, I planned it for a self induced couple of registers, a performative endeavor that included, as it does today, time and rhythm. The medium of blogging has rhythm at its centre which makes it particularly powerful when it touches a nerve and finds the punctum of the reader where it becomes more than a letter, a love letter. I conceived those two registers as rivers that joined in one flow of affective information whether it was good or bad news. It was supposed to be participative and not authorial which could only be achieved by dedicating one\s life to it and publishing more than ten posts a day. Creating a flow. I feel sorry for my right hand at the time, John Fiumara, because working with me might have driven him to lunacy. This love letter that was the blo and that for some, usually the one\s lacking something, had unexpected effects on the readers that thought had an intimate connection with me. That fictional one to one relationship made some believe that they were entitled to express opinions about me which usually came in the form of unrequired advice or, even, imagined tragic scenarios if I was not posting for two days. When I turned 40 my crisis had to do with the solipsistic realization that, in the end, we are all alone which in my case was more obvious having consistently failed in my attempts of having a long term partner and by the fact that I was an only child who had just suffered a series of abandonments and experienced them as trauma.

This water keeps me floating when I’m stray
This water’s gonna tell me it’s okay
It’s flowing and it’s showing me the way
Let it fill up the place
The water’s gonna wash away the pain
I hear it when it’s calling out my name
It’s running and it’s flooding through my veins

Like a river, my blog moved forward, dragging everything with it: life and death, the low and the high, well intentioned readers and those who saw in loveartnotpeople’s Menippean style of critique an opportunity to bask into what they perceived as a mirror of their own resentment. The two main registers I am referring to were, on one hand, a fictionalized pseudo-Augustinian confession manipulated through kitsch which had been embraced by my generation since the 1990s in Argentina. It was presented as a poetic opportunity but also as catharsis and the latter touched a social nerve. My raw fears of loneliness once my mother died after a decade long oncological farewell met my narcissistic wounded self collide with a time in the arts where the market was extremely powerful and monumentalisation of the authorial signature. The only thing in a country where artistic quality has been in doubt since its beginnings that can inject value into a work of art is the aura of the genius of the artist. Even our free for all artistic education follows that unproductive criteria as if Argentina was constantly on the search for the next Michelangelo.

Benzacars Artist, Max Gomez Canle

This happened when the emerging technologies allowed for an atomisation of cultural production to have an audience without the checks imposed by the gatekeepers. My generation not only in Argentina but everywhere took the opportunity with both hands and this coincided with the beginning of the third decade of capitalist globalization where individuality and even our material body became a vast territory to conquer (as when, according to those Post New Age ideologies such as Mindfulness “one must put the work on his or her own life to become a better person” controlling the passions and laboring harder in worse conditions which, to clarify my position, I think is bollocks). At the time, I had money in the bank, I needed to rest and for many reasons, in hindsight, I had the luxury, to indulge in the beautiful sadness of feeling sorry for oneself.

Amnesiac Art that Refers to Itself as An Exercise of Memory Is a Wonderful but Suicidal Allegory of Argentina by Max Gomez Canle

His water keeps me floating when I’m stray
The water’s gonna tell me it’s okay
It’s flowing and it’s showing me the way
Let it fill up the place
The water’s gonna wash away the pain
I hear it when it’s calling out my name
It’s running and it’s flooding through my veins
Let it fill up the place

A big truth about blogging was said to me on a date with a big shot of the digital marketing industry in London circa 2012. He said that the only reason, it would make sense to invest time or energy in a blog apart from the usual expressive and therapeutic pain in the arse where the blogger believes that his or her problems are relevant. I am, for sure, the best art critic that I have knowledge of for one sole reason, I took the time and moral cost to build a platform to speak from the margins of culture and society without having to serve any interest. This  automatically puts me in a better position to do art criticism sorting out any self colonizing ethical mortgage which conditions the way we see and think of art. The issue with blogs is that if you are not on point they come back to haunt you and with a blog that in 2015 released 30 posts a day, the risks are huge. If we add to that, the reader’s tendency not to read who wrote it but, instead, assume that anything published in my blog was of my authorship even when I explicitly headed each post with a sign saying ‘I didnt write this’, the whole thing becomes a boomerang. Besides, the success of a blog is, without exception, measured by the number of clicks which adds another, if not the most important, motivation for choosing quantity over quality. Then we have the problem of quality itself but thats another issue and of that the responsible are the Southern Cone feminist scholars who froze their brains in the late 1960s and the only thing that grew from there was resentment.

 

Laura Malosetti Costa, a leading Argentine art historian that said, during my cancellation campaign that ‘she hadn’t read anything by me and she did not have to for condemning me’

I hold on to the water
It saves me from the horrors that come
No wonder I am stronger
Oh-whoa, oh-oh
It’s feeding my hunger
It’s keeping me under
Your water runneth over, oh
Oh-whoa, oh-oh

Human beings or, to be more specific, the middle classes tend to organise their taste in rankings of what they like or dislike which tends to be, as fashion itself, limited in time until it expire an another taste replaces it. What is debated in those cases concerns reception not production. Blogs are of great value because they capture the present like neither newspapers or TV news can. When it comes to the great discovery by Shakespeare which he presented embodied as Hamlet, the difference between blog and book became is widern and probably, that is the reason why in a place like the UK, an alternative, closer to the blog but that maintain the promise of unity of the book has flourished: the audible book, a conflation of performance and literature. The specificity of blogging as a medium is its fragility and it is precisely in that fragility where his main strength lies. It can be mended, deleted, hacked, corrected and viral. Its nature is not too different to that of love because it can communicate the feelings of a life lived without the filters that institutions and self perpetuating bureaucracies usually impose and it is unpredictable. However, the most important and certainly unachievable attraction that the blog presents is its promise of authenticity which as such, is untrue.

 

Writing a book is a complete different matter altogether because it shares with the medium of painting what Leo Battista Albertí referred to as ‘immortality’ for it survives its makers. In photography this is all more urgent when taking a picture becomes shooting one. According to Susan Sontag, the photo is an index of the photographer’s death for it freezes his or her likeness and is, usually, used to remember those who are gone or something that cannot happen again. Of course, Sontag does not take into account that the chemical components of analogical photographs are self combustible and that almost the totality of the artistic production ends up in the bin. However, it is true that after the warnings and suggestions of editors and the marketing team and the mandatory consultations with the legal team, that original drive towards the authentic decreases while the pose and pretense of being authentic becomes professionalized. And this is the case of a minimal fraction of the universe of authors whose overwhelming majority remains unpublished.

 

The photography of a dead child and of trauma in the making

As an archive, there is no other for this blog has reported, commented, informed, laughed at and theorised the art of the region since 2012 until 2020 everyday many times. An American university has expressed interest in having a copy of it because they consider it as the most accurate account of Argentine culture and politics of that decade. Chilean Laureate Poet Carmen Berenguer who was Pedro Lemebels factotum not as muse but as the one who educated him, showed him the strings to pull for him betraying her, told me that legendary Chilean cureator Ernesto Munoz said that I was one of the great Latin American artists.

Just focus, the process
Will show us how to move forward
You look ’round, it’s too loud
The big crowd, but that isn’t important
There’s no give, there’s bruises
I’m losing, no, this is a disaster
I feel low, I breathe slow
And let go, then give it to the water (give it to the water)
Give it to the water
Give it to the water

 

 

Lovearnotpeoples data system which will be online only by subscription is composed of a myriad of fragments that become something special when it gets in the motion of the flow. It is in the pace of the impact and in the rhythm of the blogging that gives this medium its liquid specificity. So far, the Academic Ivory Tower and the Cultural Elites have underestimate it as a subjective expression that could potentially become anti/academic and minor. Ironically, those who say that are women and it is ironic because the genesis of Feminism is based on circunscribing for women the place of the minor, the intimate and the personal. Academics claim that is not as unitary as a book while at the Argentine Commission of Science and Research the only published things are fragments. But the flow of blogging opens an opportunity for the subaltern to speak and to make his or her point heard. Maybe that is the reason why the moments that precede an outburst of feminine energy in history almost always coincides with a cultural explosion of subjective circulation of unmediated information. Later, almost as a rule, those moments are followed by a demonisation of their character that are left in history as prostitutes or as something licentious related to what the Victorians considered as immoral. The cultural elite usually designates a bureaucreacy to protect certain aspects of knowledge that are said to be so obscure that could only be accessed by specialized students of its hermeneutics. The results of those exegetical elaborations are presented as indispensable. Such moments of liberation of feminine energy are usually followed by repression. Examples of this is Empress Theodora progressive feminist policies and its backlash, Lorenzo and Cosimo de Medici and Savonarola and even better Rodrigo Borgia otherwise known as Pope Alexander VI and their attempt to include a female goddess, something that the Spaniards push forward from the gates to and from American themselves: the Seville of Philip IV and their passion for the Immaculate Conception and its counterpart masculinists Pope Urban VIII and his chief librarian, the pedantic Cassiano del Pozzo.

At the Courtauld and Warburg Institutes, such hieroglyphs are approached with fetishistic fascination and maybe that is the problem of specialisation as an effect of that replacement of the pilgrimate to Rome in the times that succeded Henry VIIIs decapitation of the Church. The Courtauld’s aspirational admiration invites us to see the Grand Tour of the English Aristocracy of the XVII and XVIII centuries as a model of civilisation. But what was happening there was that, as many times in the past, two energies collided the flow of the feminine with its lethal combination of self perpetuating bureaucracies and the manipulation of symbols and renunciation to allegory. For there is nothing more feminine than allegory and very few things more allegorical in the Argentine culture of the 2010s than loveartnotpeople.

Just focus, the process
Will show us how to move forward
You look ’round, it’s too loud
The big crowd, but that isn’t important
There’s no give, there’s bruises
I’m losing, no, this is a disaster
I feel low, I breathe slow
And let go, then give it to the water (give it to the water)
Give it to the water
Give it to the water

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