Dialectic of Decadence PDF

by Donald B. Kuspit Postmodernism has been described as a decadent and pluralistic period in which avant-garde art has been institutionalized, stereotyped, and effectively neutralized; and where models of art seem to stand in ironical, nihilistic relationship to each other. In this study, Donald Kuspit argues that only the idiosyncratic artist remains credible and convincing in the postmodern era, he or she relentlessly pursuing a sense of artistic and human identity in a situation where there are no guidelines, art historically or socially. Idiosyncratic art, Kuspit posits, is a radically personal art that establishes unconscious communication between individuals in doubt of their identity. Functioning as a medium of self-identification, it affords a sense of authentic selfhood and communicative intimacy in a postmodern society where authenticity and intimacy seem irrelevant and absurd.

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