Control

1.“;but in a society of control, the corporation had replaced the factory, and the corporation is a spirit, a gas.”

2.“;but the corporation constantly presents the brashest rivalry as a healthy form of emulation, an excellent motivational force that opposes individuals against one another and runs through each, dividing each within.”


Both of the quotes above are from Deleuze and his essay ‘Societies of control’ which I read many years ago and has influenced my thought. I wrote a few months back about commercial street art as opposed to graffiti. If you take what Deleuze says in his essay what you are seeing is commercialisation yet also corporate control. For murals a lot of designs have to be approved by many parties to then see the work implemented in an exact copy of the design. There is no room for expression whatsoever. You could say the artists style is the true expression though most artists modify (water down) their style to get the job. It turns the artwork into a product. Corporate interests influence politics and they are vying for many levels of society, we are all being bought. Everyone and anything can be bought for a price. But the product has to be streamlined, you can’t just sell pure expression. Of course canvas can be a different matter altogether. Though if you already have a style that is a product you may still need to produce the same work sans expression.

Graffiti can’t be bought. It can be recycled though. It is at times just refuse. It has no value. This is only because it can’t be controlled. It can be monitored. It can be investigated. It is the opposite of control thus its lack of value. That is the mentality. Yet graffiti is still trying to increase freedom. It is always evolving. Street art will only become more and more like glorified wallpaper but even street art vies for freedom at times. Yet those works are few and far between. Is it simply that society wants to limit freedom through corporate control? If the corporation is the state then how can we escape? Freedom and true democracy have died at the hands of corporate interests. Will art die out too? The power of money that drowned out the potential for new expression. Art though is somewhat alive and well. Yet what will be arts price in this world of corporate greed?

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