By Edward Povey.
“Déstructuralisme Figuratif is inevitable (…) A perfect and honest perception of a species facing radical change, the loss of society's previous self-image, and giving birth to fear, anxiety and self-inspection.”
A well-known phenomenon in the world of science is that when an area of study is being explored in one part of the world, it is almost always being simultaneously explored elsewhere. There are several theories about this, including universal consciousness, and could it be that when human beings delve deeply enough into their psyches, they touch others, or reach towards the single truth itself? The same phenomenon appears in art of course, with the same stylistic breakthrough occurring in several parts of the world at the same time.
Obvious in my view, I would suggest that new concepts in art reflect changes in the state of society or the globe at large. Artistic awareness is not only artistic, but is intuitive awareness in general.
The history of humanity shows a progression from extended family units to tribes, from tribes to nations, to nation conglomerates and so forth. Every new stage of development of the species is resisted by humanity, as is most change, and it perennially raises questions about the meaning of society and the role of the individual, as well as anxieties about the future. To many, these radical changes in the structure of humanity raise feelings of doom, as if society, the race and often the individual were falling apart. In truth, the old structure is falling apart at these times.
As populations rise and races intermingle and intermarry, clearly the nation concept falters and comes into question, and the idea of globalism begins to appear, with theories like The United Nations and Esperanto - the proposed universal language published in 1887. Urban neighborhoods have become a confusion of nationalities and races, quite happy in some places but less so in others. The youth often appear like a vanguard, expressing the underlying distrust of humanity's next chapter, in demonstrations, riots and insightful graffiti, resulting in spray-painted walls, urban decay, and declining corners of society.
At a time like this, Destructuralisme Figuratif is inevitable. Human beings are seen as fragmented, falling into pieces, a confusion of eyes seeming to look in ten directions at once. The paint surfaces are often visceral, streamed and violent, reflecting the state of some multicultural urban areas, and above all humanity is explored, but losing its previous integrity as if it were being taken apart. A perfect and honest perception of a species facing radical change, the loss of society's previous self-image, and giving birth to fear, anxiety and self-inspection.
As usual, the artists: the philosophical avant garde in the real sense of the phrase - intuit the underlying feelings of a lost world. Lost, but only temporarily.