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Anthology: Ten Years of TQ – Guy Zimmerman

At a time when progressives are afflicted with incrementalist ideas and a sense of retreat and resignation, I wrote these essays to promote the idea of radical transformation. By grounding this work in the personal, I wanted my own limitations, biases and presuppositions to be as clear as possible. What links these essays is the idea that the normal operations of the self are inadequate to the vivid complexity of experience, and entail suffering for all involved. Engaging with the work of artists, theatre-makers, film directors, writers, musicians and philosophers, I make the case that and that the social world urgently needs to be re-made. In my view, the artists and thinkers I write about — Marcel Duchamp, Samuel … [Read more...]

Disgust on Traction

Paul and Damon McCarthy’s Rebel Dabble Babble – I’m on Traction in downtown L.A. last month and I hear the sounds of domestic violence coming through the walls of a warehouse. Somebody’s yelling, getting slapped, cutlery is being broken. This is in the Arts District, where Los Angeles drops its ambivalence about being a city and develops some street culture. There’s a sign beside the door where the guttural cries seem to be coming from: The Box Gallery. Entering the building turns out to be the cultural equivalent of changing the bandage on a stranger’s hideous and possibly terminal infection, and yet, with my dying breath I would defend the artistic quality of the work that was on exhibit there.  What you would have seen … [Read more...]

A Conversation with John Duncan: Prologue

Related Post: A Conversation with John Duncan_Part Two It was Nietzsche who predicted the arts and sciences would merge into a single practice capable of opening new vistas to the world. The techne of science and the raw Dionysian energy of art together would render obsolete both theology—that caked residue under the toilet bowl of metaphysics—and the equally tendentious religiosity of Positivism. Whether Nietzsche envisioned specific technologies adapted by one and made suitable for the other, or more generally a reinforced mindset we cannot say. After all, art and science, from Euclid to Catherine Wagner, have always reacted with each other to produce a permanent art. Perhaps he meant a form of rational empiricism forged not by … [Read more...]

Bring on the Clowns

Paul McCarthy, Wallace Shawn and a Mountain I Know – There are beefy guard rails now on the road up Mount Lemmon, outside Tucson. When I was a boy the drive was more of an adventure, the steep canyons littered with the skeletal remains of cars that had lost control on the tight curves. Often my grandfather would have been at the wheel, bent hands steering the pickup or, at other times, the big Cadillac he’d earned with hard labor and quick wits. I’d watch as the topography outside the windows shifted from saguaro and mesquite to pine forest, and the big rock formations came and went, spinning majestically as the road took us around and upwards toward Summer Haven near the summit. Today my father’s wife Elena is driving and my father, … [Read more...]