Modern Art Madness, Double Feature: Surreal Horrorscapes in Mariusz Lewandowski “Atomic Emptiness” and “The Birth of Artificial Intelligence”.

500_500_productGfx_cd48296184a7f94f9127f18251d95d0aThe Birth of Artificial Intelligence” (2016).

Mariusz Lewandowski (ML) has become quite the breakout artist in the surreal/metal album art/post-Beksinski art scene often found on the margins of the art world, occupied by visionary artists, Neo-hippie outsider art, psychedelia, comic and tattoos conventions, etc. What I would estimate to be the “darker side” of the visionary art phenomenon that has grown in popularity from the mid 90s to the mid 2000s, especially now in the internet age (instead of Grey and Venosa, think H.R. Giger). ML has always captivated me, being a fan of Beksinski’s work since i was very young and discovering those haunting, ghastly, somber and surreal images on the internet. ML has really taken the mantle of being the foremost successor to Zdzislaw’s artistic vision in the Polish art scene, being featured in some pretty prominent album art (Bell Witch’s famed album “Mirror reaper” and the recent Psycroptic album “As the Kingdom Drowns” come to mind, both technical masterpieces in their respective sub-genres of doom and tech-death metal).

Despite what the critics say, ML does indeed have a distinctive style with several different themes that overlap and contort into each other, and is not merely a “Beksinski-clone”. For instance, a lot of ML’s image-themes have a clear distinction, with accompanying titles that match each theme, often dealing with apocalyptic visions, inversion of Christian symbolism, Gnosis, etc.  Whereas Beksinski almost never titled works, claimed to be working from pure ideation and visionary/dream-like potency alone, whereas ML often chooses to have a more direct and clear panacea of images, utilizing theological, philosophic and alchemical themes instead of the purist obscure surrealism of his master Zdzislaw. One theme ML keeps hitting upon over and over again is that ominous, faceless hooded image, often denoting the cosmic father, time, God, the coming of the end, a keeper of secrets and revelation, etc. abb525fc407cf6dbc6b9d9b3317756ea “Absolute Authority” (2017).

One persistent theme found in many of ML’s works is that of the “cube” the platonic form, the Kubrickean “monolith” that is a harbinger of apocalyptic change and evolution. In the first piece “Atomic Emptiness”, we see the cube as a container for one of the most singular transformative events of the modern age, the birth of Atomic energy and nuclear weaponry; The monolith cube entity is the bringer of a kind of death-drive, a civilization-erasing entity, one that provides energy and a key to extinction of life on earth. Either the monolith brings about radical change/shifts in life itself, or it brings about the end, the in toto being-towards-death for life itself, those very limits of which we can image of earth “post-Anthropocene” that speculative realism is at pains to imagine.

In the essay “Meditations On the Atom and Timeby Dennis Stillings (from the book “Apocalypse Culture”, the infamous compilation of odd-ball and fringe ideas by Adam Parfrey) it is posited that the “age of the atom” is not merely something to be viewed from the lens of cold scientific utility alone. Rather, the nuclear reality is a radical transformation in the fabric of existence itself. With it comes the Promethean gift, the promise of the snake in the garden, mankind putting itself on to the feet of the heavens in our ability to self-annihilate all of life on this planet. We can now fully enframe all of life, and make nature bend the knee to our whims (or so we think). Stillings sees this not merely as scientific advancement, but a modern mythopoetics of domination, and possibly, mass destruction, similar to the “war in heaven” brought down to earthly life. The liberal individual self now finally reigns supreme over all the limitations of culture and nature, but this is a hellish vision, contained within the monolith of our own techno-futurist progress is the key to our very own obliteration. Hence we see a similar image in “The Birth of Artificial Intelligence”, the AI cube, the bringer of great cataclysmic change is represented in a uniquely mythological way by ML…Above the primitive tools and steel workings rises again the hooded figure, this time with a scyth, the reaper, the bringer of both death and change. Unless you are Nick Land, the ascent of this new techno-AI reality that can supplicate (and potentially obliterate) the human reality of this world is brought about by death. It is interesting to not that the reaper here has both the same generative and nihilitive functions.

This brings us finally to what Stillings points out about atomic energy (which is equally applicable in some ways to AI running amok), that of which Orthodox Christianity terms the “Apocatastasis”. This is a concept found in many world religions, that of a great restoration after an upheaval, a collapse back into traditional or sacred form, a quiting of disorder with an order that is much more primordial and in keeping with that of the Devine’s wishes for humanity. The stoics formulated that it was a great return to an alignment of the celestial bodies, and the Greek Orthodox theorize that it is the future state where all beings will be saved and in harmony with God once a restoration of order happens. Here is a more catastrophic version of this great restorative equilibrium, after the dance of cosmic destruction comes reconciliation and salvation with the lord. The tools of man are thrown back on ourselves, and through the overthrow of man through nuclear black-sun apocalypse, or through trans-human AI, will come about this restoration of God, Man and Nature, hence the mythic imagery of ML that sets him apart as an artist from other painters that deal with themes of technology and futurism.

Advertisements

Why Alain De Bottom is Evil and Must be Stopped.

The Internet has released many ergregores, thought-forms, horrors, ID-driven pathologies, and wonders unto our lives. Inhabiting the realms of the cyber abyss lay various assorted crazy people, ranging from crazy wisdom, the types who used to be Pool Hall shamans before the internet, to just plain insane people. However, one type of E-denizen is, in a way, a thought creation of the collective unconscious, rather, they latch onto and prey upon psychic needs like vampire digital Remora fish. Call them what you will, E-beggers, grifters, Charlatan gurus, self-help dream merchants, etc. One only has to casually browse any best-seller book list to see the grift of self-help is at an all time high in terms of popularity. The common YouTube grifter could only dream of scamming and suggestively feeding mental pablum to boomers, wine aunts and desperate housewives by the tens of millions. But imagine if you will, a grift game so strong that it collides these two realms of popular self-help with You-tubing, and also making people feel an unwarranted sense of sophistication about themselves (lets call this the “Reddit factor”), all at the same time! Yes ladies and gentlemen, let be point out this particularly modern form of diabolical pleasantness that lies just behind the surface of Alain De Bottom. Continue reading “Why Alain De Bottom is Evil and Must be Stopped.”

Oh Canada, This Land of Forgotten Wanderers, so long Dead Dreamers.

Sometimes before eating dinner, me and my Father watch a usual assortment of TV programming for an hour or so, usually BNN updates and Judge Judy. I don’t really watch much TV anymore, but often we watch this one series from the Turner classic films channel, it is a presentation of a few short films from the Canadian National Film Board, all shot between the 40s and 60s, a time of great transition for Canada. Continue reading “Oh Canada, This Land of Forgotten Wanderers, so long Dead Dreamers.”

Content-minded Vol. 1. collected writings, The Thermidor years Collection, 2017-2018.

I finally compiled all of my Thermidor articles into one collective PDF, including a very interesting introduction chapter and some never before released bonus articles! I wish to thank all of my readers who have joined me over the years, and who have enjoy my articles in and outside of Thermidor Magazine, it was like a home to me, but rest assured, the pursuit of GOOD CONTENT is my life!.

Please download and send this PDF everywhere you can, its got all the Thermidor stuff and then some!

The Thermidor Mag article Collection.

Reprobate Hollywood, From Ancient To Modern.

(Originally published in Thermidor Magazine, from May 2018).

The world is now coming to realize what some keen observers have known all along: that Hollywood as a cultural institution is rotten to the core. As a major part of the culture industry (to borrow Horkheimer and Adorno’s phrase,) Hollywood has eaten away at the moral and spiritual fabric of society while also serving as a major conveyor belt for the absolute worst ideological excesses of the modern world. The cultural legitimacy and influence of deep-pocket creeps like Harvey Weinstein are shocking, to say the least – this is a man who has thrown vast sums at Democratic political campaigns and various Hollywood-championed, ultra-progressive ideological causes. That much is clear, but it is merely a facile and labored point American conservatives like to make when throwing barbs at fallen celebrities and Hollywood moguls. Continue reading “Reprobate Hollywood, From Ancient To Modern.”

Meme Exegesis #3: NPC Pepe.

We have all seen it, meme’d it, spoke of it, saw the mainstream media freak out about it, embrace its edginess, heard it being called “right wing solipsism” etc. The best argument against solipsism is that if everything is merely the construct of our minds, or that I in the singular self is the only “true” consciousness, then why would I choose to be some weak mortal in hell-world? Why would I not imagine myself to be a God among men, conforming reality to my will? At least this is the experience of being “woke” or “a non-normie” a “non-NPC” to the Online Right wing. At least this is what drives at the heart of the NPC meme, and why it is so effective against the liberal left. Most people, and most of them especially, feel that they can choose everything in life as a free and autonomous individual, including what one deeply believes. Ask them something, anything, like “why is freedom and equality a good thing?” They sure will have some waffled philosophic justification, or appeal to some inane naive empiricism that justifies their religious devotion to “freedom” and “equality”. But the reality is in a totally secular and groundless worldview, these so-called principles are simply images of thought, unconscious assumptions that, either through indoctrination or social osmosis, go totally unquestioned.

You see, there are very few occasions for true freedom to take place, and that’s usually reserved for artists, philosophers, certain athletes, Holy people, people with true power, etc. The tiny and momentary moments in life that are filled with brilliance, clarity, beauty, religious and artistic ecstasy, zen-like stillness etc. what Schopenhauer called the momentary “suspension of the will-to-live”. Most people live life through what Gurdjieff called “sleeping-wakefulness”, being a non-playable character following a script. What the extremely online Right got wrong (hence why the meme died out so quickly) is that this meme simply does not apply to *sniffs* IDE-OLO-GEE. AND SO ON, and so on….. Continue reading “Meme Exegesis #3: NPC Pepe.”

Monday Modern Art Madness #21: Caveman vs. Moderns, An Honest look at Tracy Emin’s recent Exhibition at White Cube.

Recently, I came upon a thread that really encapsulates the sentiment that the cultural/online/whatever Right has towards artistic modernism and contemporary art. Read it here if you have not seen it yet, it really peaked my interest in many ways:

To begin with a bit of critique, whole essays have been written about the differences between “modern”, starting with (argubly) Goya, right up to the impressionists, and all 19th-20th century art movements, ending in roughly the 1960s and 70s. Many on the Right (ALA Paul Joseph Watson) get the two confused, but this is of little value in pointing out.

Juxtaposed to the famed oldest cave paintings found in the Chauvet cave, is a “god” of contemporary art, the overrated luminary of the NBA (New British Artists) whom shocked the world in the late 90s by winning the illustrious Turner Prize…The quintessential artist of “the self”, the almighty and ubiquitous BODY so obsessed over by critical theorists, art critics and lit-departments, the embodied female, the body of trauma, BODIES is the name of the game in the 21st century. I am of course talking about Tracy Emin, and her new exhibition of paintings, ,sculptures, photographs and drawings at White Cube entitled “A Fortnight of Tears”. Continue reading “Monday Modern Art Madness #21: Caveman vs. Moderns, An Honest look at Tracy Emin’s recent Exhibition at White Cube.”