Sunday, July 22, 2007

A reflection on two exemplary artists!

Well, despite having seen the towering piece of work that is “Gummo” several years ago, I‘d sort of dismissed Harmony Korine as the useless, dilettante son of wealthy New York Bo-Hos making dubious capital out of the “exotic” lives of America’s Permanent Underclass, but clearly I was wrong. As the comments box informs me, “he doesn’t care if Burzum are Nazis, so long as it’s good music.” And he’s a JEW.

It sort of takes the breath away, doesn’t it, the degree to which he can nobly rise above petty ideological and historical concerns? Though as they say, that is the true aesthete at work, inhabiting a universe in which there is only form and affect, tone, colour, texture, line and their variously delightful arrangements, a truly rarified soul, no wonder he has so much cache among the young from all walks of life, but especially in just those impoverished constituencies his work so soulfully represents. It’s not just the amazing “sympathy” he feels for trailer park trash and schizophrenics, it’s his ability to get “under their skin” and really represent their worlds in a meaningful way that gets at the deeper, underlying, kookily beautiful, surreal and bizarre dimension of it all once all the superfluous socio-economic stuff has been stripped away. Isn’t this, after all, the true liberation that in a way they/we should be seeking, rise above the petty daily concerns, become SPIRITUAL, and view the world again with the eyes of a child, there’s a dark magic and enchantment everywhere, even in the ghetto. You just need to learn how to LOOK and artists such as Harmony Korine are our great teachers.

You have to say that Burzum, in his own way, hasn’t quite managed to become the true artist that Harmony Korine is, he’s still caught up in all other kinds of “issues” (church burning, murder) that Harmony has superceded, or perhaps not superceded exactly as Harmony was simply born with a divine ability to not care at all, in any way, about “ideological” concerns and thus is by his very nature a TRUE artist, while Burzum is still struggling with all that earthly, let’s-change-the-world stuff, with the Heathen Front. As his website says:

“What makes Burzum special - and what elevates it above mere 'rebel' status - is that Varg has a very definite vision of a new society and has very real aims (backed up by very real actions). If you walk down a street wearing an Anal Cunt shirt, you might get the message across to certain people that you hate them, hate society and hate its values. If you wear a Burzum shirt, you get the message across that you hate society and its values and you are working to create a new society with new values.” (italics mine)

Interestingly though, there may be some overlap between the two men, Varg is doing time for arson and stabbing one of his ex-band mates to death and Harmony’s wikipedia entry informs me..

“He originally intended to follow up Gummo with a short-lived project known as Fight Harm, directed by illusionist David Blaine.It comprised footage of Korine engaging random people in actual street fights. In these he followed rules of always provoking the fight and continuing until threat of death. Korine, who often said he would die for the cinema, hoped to make a cross between a Buster Keaton vehicle and a snuff film, but after only six fights, he was hospitalized and forced to abandon the project.” (italics mine)

So perhaps once Varg’s released, the two could get together and fulfill both Varg’s desire to institute an overthrow of the reigning Judo-Christian world order and Korine’s laudable commitment to die for cinema ( more evidence of his artistic stature, I mean, I love cinema, especially edgy, low-budget American Indy stuff by really profound thinkers like Gus Van Sant, but I wouldn’t be prepared to die for it. I guess I just don’t really grasp how truly important it is, what’s at stake here. Still, it’s nice to know that there is still something worth dying for.)
Naturally Varg will have to go back to prison afterwards and Korine won’t be around to make any more films like the epochal “Julien-Donkey Boy” but if they’re prepared to make these kind of sacrifices, I, for one, am FULLY prepared to support them.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I know you're kidding, but I agree anyway.