Friday, June 17, 2016
Criticism in art and culture needs the following upgrade
If you can't paint with the greatness of Raphael or Rembrandt or sculpt like Praxiteles or Rodin nevertheless you still need be that great if you want to called great, even if your subject matter today is different. You might object and say, “but that means that almost no-one measures up!” Sorry, but that is correct. This is the kind of criticism we need today when anything is called great. Your will-to-power may be fierce but that cannot guarantee greatness or genius any more than a falling acorn can guarantee a great tree.
But you may ask, “does that not mean that we cannot choose or prefer any new art or culture?” Or you may ask, “what gives you that kind of certainty?” My answer is that epistemological idealism has destroyed philosophy with the idea that the real is a non-material idea or a spiritual non-thing, beginning at least as far back as Plato and culminating in the relativity of values and the ugliness of modern art and culture.
The definition of the ideal that I recognize is a standard of beauty or morality directly related to material things, to objects, and ultimately to life itself rising in material evolution to the supermaterial perfection of real Godhood. This grounding of the ideal in real material life means that we can accept, with reservations, that which comes closest to true greatness and genius in art and culture, while always demanding the highest ideal of greatness and genius.
This calls for a purity of criticism where personal or ethnic wills-to-power are not allowed to bias criticism. This no small task requiring intellectual courage, with a fierce almost neurotic desire to find and speak the truth regardless of the cost, which seems related to physical courage and health.