Posts Tagged ‘poets’

Yr Blood Frosting Name

Sunday, October 27th, 2013

As a writing exercise, I had my students get a new sparkle crash from the Unicorn Name Generator, do some Google image searches, and poem the results. By the end, I was feeling like the Unicorn Name Generator knows too much about all of us. Is it the NSA? Is it the Poetry Foundation?

Alice Notley’s Unicorn Name:

Screen Shot 2013-10-27 at 12.24.47 PM

Raul Zurita’s Unicorn Name:

Screen Shot 2013-10-27 at 12.42.07 PM

Neil Young’s Unicorn Name:

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Art’s a Fucking Mess

Monday, September 12th, 2011

My friend Tadd over at Big Other has a post up about why Plato wanted to kick all the poets out of his ideal republic. And I’m no philosopher. But my understanding has long been that Plato’s problem with poets/art (besides the whole mimesis “copy of a copy” thing) is that art is messy, uncontrollable.

Like, consider this:

Someone—some artist somewhere—decided to make this. Is it good? Bad? Funny? Sick? Evil? Juvenile? Calculated? Hip? Clever? Stupid? Immoral? Amoral? Sure—it’s all those things, and more! It supports a variety of readings. In fact, the better an artwork is (I think this is a pretty OK one), the more irreducible it tends to be (at least, according to certain lines of aesthetic reasoning that I think Tadd would agree with).

Good art disrupts the social order. It wakes you up, shocks you, makes you feel alive—it makes you see the world again, differently. Bad art is boring, predictable, prescribed, a weak illustration of what you’ve already been thinking. (That’s my problem with so many depictions of September 11th, Roxanne—they reduce that day into something so digestible, so mundane, it’s as though it never happened.)

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