|Yoshitora - Miyamato Musashi fights Sasaki Kojiro at Ganryujima in Kyushu
I was flashing on something the other morning. It will be twenty years next year on our collective journey into the new millennium. Can you believe it? So soon? And what do we have to show for it? Well, we now wear our baseball caps sideways or backwards, that's something. Our political commentators, the Ari Melbers of this world, now pepper their commentary with rap lyrics. Pimple popping videos. That's a great leap forward.
We have become enraptured and informed with the most intimate details of the least accomplished and talented people one could ever imagine, reality television stars. Many people now have new gigs on various social media, large corporations bankroll their precocious cuteness and enthusiasm and call them influencers, in hopes of their getting other muggles to buy their mentor's products.
Did read yesterday that the millennials have no interest in the sprawling McMansions of their elders and I think that is a good thing. They are scaling it down, probably scared shitless about issues like the economy and sustainability.
Interesting article on the subject behind a paywall at the Wall Street Journal, Millennials don't want to buy baby boomers' sprawling, multi-bedroom homes, and it's creating a major problem in the real-estate market, which is synopsized here.
"These days, buyers of all ages eschew the large, ornate houses built in those years in favor of smaller, more modern-looking alternatives, and prefer walkable areas to living miles from retail," Taylor wrote.All well and good.
Younger buyers are also uninterested in outdated interior design.So now we can throw crown molding on the ash heap of history too? That is kind of sad.
"Design trends have shifted radically in the past decade," Taylor wrote in The Journal. "That means a home with crown moldings, ornate details and Mediterranean or Tuscan-style architecture can be a hard sell, while properties with clean lines and open floor plans get snapped up."
In addition to their love of open floor plans, millennials are known for being partial to minimalist, low-maintenance designs and sleek, discreet appliances, elements not always found in older homes.
|Your jail cell is just perfect!
But not surprising. Because anything classic, historic, western, representational, curved, pre -1970 or ethnic is pretty much verboten with the new millennial. Minimalist, decluttered, streamlined, these people are all heading towards the same bauhaus prison motif. They know nothing and they want to know nothing and they don't seem to collect.
I see it heavily in the art market. Amorphous blob art is hot right now, god forbid the artist ever learned how to actually draw or load a brush. Oh, that's right, it's non objective.
We have eschewed warm and headed straight to cool and now we are in strictly frigid. I am not saying that the Tuscan wave didn't turn into a monstrosity too, it definitely did.
But do we have to eradicate every last vestige of the old world in the new modern aesthetic? Isn't there a little room for nuance and emotion and mixing in some of the old crap somewhere?
|The Boy -1948 - Thomas Hart Benton
I obtained this wonderful Thomas Hart Benton lithograph recently. It depicts a young man, waving goodbye to his family and horse and preparing to make his way in the world. I was proudly showing it to various people entering my shop. Of all ages. And do you know, maybe twenty percent even knew who Benton was? If that. The most famous regionalist in America, or one of the main two if you factor in Grant Wood and nobody knows who either is anymore. I'd give them a hint, Grapes of Wrath, but still no dice. Pollack's teacher. Blank stare. Won't even bring up Titian or Rubens.
It was shocking really. I guess that I expect too much from people. Supply them their gruel and an occasional gluten free iced kombucha latte with green protein and they really don't need much else. Got to pay back those big college loans first, I suppose.
Of course they don't want to learn about the depression because depressions are by their very nature, depressing. Ditto that big war, what was that about again?
We now live in a time of great cultural illiteracy. They don't teach art history in the schools anymore either. And people don't care. Frankly, they don't know shit about art or history. There seems to be a void evident in the old quest for knowledge that drove past generations, the desire to learn about things, to see how they tick, to appreciate their innate beauty.
Every person on the globe has a powerful computer permanently residing on the end of their hand and they still know nothing. Or maybe they actually know something that the rest of us don't know. Why rearrange the deck chairs if the ship is sinking? Who knows?
|falling off the ledge - © Robert Sommers 2019