HYPER-BABEL

(click here to download full catalog in pdf format)

In the space-time expanse of the Upper Paleolithic, a period 10 times longer than the Christian era lived so far, we find the first, most complete testimony of human history through the wonderful art of caves. There are three hundred identified sites along European territory, while researchers talk of thousands more still undiscovered. The testimony is clear, and it would have been brought to light even better if its image were freed of the overload of artifacts, objects of work, war and entertainment that persist still today to be stylized with the mass utilitarian aesthetics of series and to simulate art. Cave art is the first form of high art that the creative subject with today’s intellectual capacity demonstrated on Earth. When it comes to form, as would have happened consistently for 40.000 years and more, the performance of this art would refer to the relations between the creator and the symbolic potentials of the environment.

The logic of data naturally gives rise to the idea that Paleolithic caves were the most perfect interiors for the first demonstrations of Art. The environments painted by the Paleolithic artists were selected for their depth, space, suitable acoustics and they were never used for accommodation or funerals. The rocky interior served exclusively for the performance of art, clear testimonies of which are the murals and musical instruments made from animal bones. The intentionality of the performance of art is also attested by the specific preparations, such as the indispensable scaffolding for the paintings in Altamira or the processing of ochre and magnesium dioxide to produce the yellow, red and violet colors. The specificity of data proves that differently from cognitive and religious developments – whose traces are equally in evidence in the large number of petroglyphs, repetitive symbols, logical constants, pictograms and ideograms – the rituals of the painted caves testify to the first traces of a highly complex Art.

Under the conditions of minimal productive activity, the Paleolithic artists were in every detail the most direct observers of their creation and environment. They did not “invent” art “for art’s sake”. They naturally sketched visions generated by their mind and intuition under circumstances that the environment itself stimulated. The spherical reality of the cave, the anoxia, the trance state, the internal echo of instrumental and vocal sounds, the three dimensional effect of the paintings created on the variegated refractions of the rocks scenery, the movement of the images created and the creators themselves under the flickering light of torches – everything in that interior was perfect, because it made up the nucleus of a complex and authentic art, which would later burst forth in different forms of “atelier,” “theatre,” “concert hall” or “cinema”. The creators verified their intuition, experienced the essential echoes of the Self and communicated with the Form of Beauty in front of their painted cave rocks. The space-time of the cave could never generate the massive illusions of the relative horizon: the ritual was a true “wormhole40” toward the absolute horizon, a journey in time towards the universal truth where creators represented the ‘plane of immanence41.’ Their intuition was one with the wisdom, the Self and the Universe, in the manifestations of which they saw the forms of their own existence everywhere. Subjects of the Earth were subjects of the Cosmos and vice versa. In a world not yet invaded by the contest of the dichotomies, “Amor Dei Intellectualis42” was the most real and the most reliable. The art of Paleolithic creators offered maximum loyalty in displaying its essence. As a first manifestation of the transcendent Form of Beauty “outside space-time”, it could not be reconciled with the dualism. The existence of separated cosmic and human realities was a complete absurdity to the Paleolithic creators, a two-headed mythological ghost not yet conceived. Through their art, the CREATED REALITY confirmed the irreversible process of human history on Earth, and this is what was most important.

In the course of the history of civilization, within a short time, the illusively broken world that we perceive or the world divided between reference reality and the reproduced one would emerge unexpectedly. The accumulation of production would be followed by the illusion of symbols, increasingly more independent from the real referent or from Mother Nature, which already implied only the original model of all symbols, reproductions and representations. The creative subject would identify himself with these representations all the way to the vanities of the postmodern imagination of “hyper-reality,” a situation in which simulation would be distinguished as superior over the real world. Jean Baudrillard would develop the sensational idea of hyper-reality, according to which “the simulacrum prevails over history.” The universe would continue to expand, would increasingly be more and more unknown, although still imagined as an outside world called “reality” as if for mercy! THE PART WOULD FEEL SEPARATE, IT WOULD THREATEN THE WHOLE AND THE CREATIVE SUBJECT WOULD FEEL INTOXICATED WITHIN THE EARTHLY LIMITS WITH ALL THE RUSH OF THE CONSUMERIST IMPATIENCE OF THE TIME.

The illusive situation of “reproduction and series” would cause a waste of time and violence against Art as well… At this point of my narration, I would take a little breath, in the manner of Spinoza, recalling with much love that the “Intellectual love towards God is the very love with which God loves himself.” But love of one’s self can never be love towards a particle of the self. The beauty of CREATED REALITIES would neither be able to belong to a single millennium, nor would it become conscious only within it. A handful of “natura naturata” can neither rival nor can ti prevail over “natura naturans,” over freedom, self-causality and its immanent essence. The coherent identity of the Whole passes through the “divine suffering” of separation and the unity of the Whole, through the entire space-time process of the Universe. THE JOURNEY TOWARD THIS UNIVERSE WHERE THERE ARE NO MONSTERS, BUT HUMAN LIVES TO BE LIVED, IS THE ESSENTIAL JOURNEY TO BE CARRIED OUT, WHETHER OR NOT THE SAILORS43 OF COLUMBUS BELIEVE IT.

***

The idea that life in created realities and the power of the product over the producer are both phenomena of the capitalist era is one of the main illusive ideas that continue to be “successful.” The world of illusions takes full advantage of our failure to pay attention to the most important facts and memories of history. Love for oneself and self-respect are in some way love and respect towards World History. It is not at all excessive to emphasize an important fact time after time in order to shake ourselves free of the slag of illusions and remind ourselves of the true biography. The history of “created realities” is the history of mankind, whereas the “power of the product over the producer” is a phenomenon dominating the era of civilization. This is also the most important fact, on which the window of Art offers us the most reliable views. ART IS NOT IMITATION, ART IS NOT A COPY, ART IS THE FACT ITSELF, HENCE ART DOES NOT LIE.

In the mythology of ancient civilization, Creation was the most important, beloved and wonderful act. It was essence itself: the Creation of the subject and the object of love, the creation of love itself, of Beauty, of the Universe… The love of Pygmalion for his ivory statue, the infiltration of the demon Goddess into the statue, the fulfillment of Pygmalion’s love44 and the birth of the offspring Paphos and Metharme were nothing unusual. The statue was beautiful and the creator quite naturally could fall in love with his beautiful creation. But, in a very natural way, the art and mythology of antiquity also confirmed the era of a great transformation, where products would become “uncontrollable subjects” and would generate offspring who were more and more powerful. The myth of Pygmalion was therefore an authentic expression of alienation, the power of the product and the sand castle of the “simulacrum,” where the subjects of civilization would constantly climb up blindly to make contact with the mysteries of the Sky and the Self.

Great thinkers of all times would consider alienation as a phenomenon typical of depersonalized societies:

  • Saint Augustine wrote that mankind broke away from God because of its sinful nature, and the only solution was belief in Christ.
  • According to the economic interpretation of Karl Marx, alienation was linked to work, which could not stimulate creativity as long as it was an obligation and an act of force on the majority of mankind.
  • In Freud’s view, alienation was self-estrangement caused by the split between the conscious and unconscious parts of the mind.

For Emile Durkheim, alienation was a consequence of anomie or the continuous break with social and religious traditions.

  • The existentialist philosophers were of the opinion that human society was distinguished for the lack of power and control over its destiny, and therefore alienation was an inevitable part of human nature.

The fall of dictatorial Albanian state in 1990 was joined to those sublime moments of world history, when the idea of a control over one’s destiny revived under a new harmony between the individual and the community…

The dictatorial Albanian State resisted for a long time as an isolated and intolerant establishment, but contrary to what might be thought a priority, a goodly part of its subjects did not live the official system at all. People’s lives are not represented by the food, housing and ideas offered to them by a given political system. However cruel and violent the power of a system may be, it cannot transform human nature beyond certain limits. Hundreds of former students educated in Western countries prior to the war, lived out the waning days of their lives in “communist” Albania. They returned to their motherland armed with the most beautiful ideals and illusions about life, the family and the new Albanian society. Hallelujah, but disappointment is not at all an unknown phenomenon in the history of mankind. Trapped in the net of the dictatorial system, those former students and their families gradually put on the “bitter masks” of survival, growing into “acceptable personas,” some more and some less in an environment that would never match their Western culture, mentality and tendencies. Their “privacy” and informal social relations were deeply in conflict not only with the official norms in general, but also with the official product of their own creative activity. In the meantime, their official product constructed the entirety of an alienating reality that violated their own destiny for 45 years in the communist-dictatorial style. The establishment of democracy in 1990 offered a sublime historical moment, during which the fate of people abused by an unfair political power is handed over to a fair political power that claims to respect human nature… However, leafing through World History, which is extremely rich in examples of the game of “fair and unfair political power,” and being convinced that this history has still a long way to go, it is understandable why existentialist opinion continues to intrigue us. The risk of human destiny is egotism, and the most ideal expression of egotism is the idea of power over destiny…

The truth is that our shamanistic love for the concepts of power and control over destiny would not be so strong, if we did not imagine destiny as a series of space-time events in which material life dominates. It is difficult for us to understand destiny and the soul as essential realities not in space-time. We do not even want to think that the idea of power over destiny could be an illusion and that destiny is simply created in the form of a human history, in the form of a creative and created reality where the ideas of power and alienation are a single process and the same, single thing.

***

A good laboratory and a good observatory are not always located in the City Centre. Being in the peripheries of Empires did not stop Albania from being a good laboratory and observatory for World history. There are many elite persons of Albanian origin who made history in politics, religion and the art of the ancient empires of Egypt, Greece, Rome, Byzantium and up to postmodern America. It may seem an exaggeration, but the 45-year communist dictatorship did not shut down the Albanian laboratory even for a single day. In 45 years of dictatorship, politicians were executed because they ventured opposition policies; the spirit of contemporary Western art was persecuted because the spirit of contemporary art existed: painters, poets and writers were sentenced because they defied the norms of official art. Restricted communication in direct forms has done nothing to stop world art and culture of all epochs and nations from penetrating electronically and physically, as by magic, through books, radio or TV screens. The national level of information and the cultural education of the two million subjects of the fiercest dictatorship in the Balkans, was not at all to be looked down on. Under such a hopeless and contradictory frame of destiny, feeling to the core how violent and inevitable the alienation was to human nature, Albanian intellectuals could not refrain from devouring existentialist literature.

Albania of the 1990s officially welcomed Western democracy and along with it a process in which power and alienation would represent new relations in connection with destiny. Two thousand and six hundred years since the Athens of Cleisthenes45, after powerful empires had been established all over the globe, the freedom of political expression and freedom of speech were also shaping consistent Albanian representations. However, 2600 years was not a short period to say the word “consistent” and leave it at all! In simple words, “capitalism” and “democracy” implied “what” and “how,” but with their deficient space-time developments, there was no way for Albanian representations of capitalism and democracy to be perfected in the international contest of “what and how”. The purest expression of that contest would as always be ART, WHICH COULD NOT IMITATE, COULD NOT COPY AND COULD NOT LIE. However, what mattered was the essence with which the new Albanian State would worthily participate in the contest.

A reference point of participation in the past, in the present or in the future is an issue of the relative space-time horizon. I live the present and if I speak in the past, I simply do this for my esthetic pleasure…

Under Albanian corporate capitalism, the consumer has been transformed, just like anywhere else, into an exploited target and subject. The monopolies controlled the media, and thus the culture offered to the public was dependent on the media. The taste was dictated as soon as the subject acclimatized to the spirit of television and the media. The choice was reduced, being limited to names of brands under the principle “we are what we wear.” Consumerism was quickly transformed into a secular religion, which restricted freedom of choice through a type of violence that did not seem violent at all. Publicity images in the media became a threatening obsession to the processes of self-knowledge and self-control. The media temptation of the new capitalism affected the individuation of a personality that was by now identified with the fantasy of advertising and the ideals of consumerism, losing as if not noticing the ability to act independently from motives of consumerism. Of course, this luring of the public for commercial interests threatened the whole symbolism of real values. The media show could “beautify” the ordinary brand with musical backgrounds from Mozart, the Beatles or Dylan, not worrying in the least about its own comical situation next to the grandeur of such works. The effect of socio-cultural symbols was fading, pushing back and delaying, the more the “magic of advertising” captivated without being worthy of captivating and jeopardized without being worthy of jeopardizing the essence of the symbolism of Art. Political expression, speech and the press were increasingly transformed as if by magic into more sophisticated, more powerful and polarized alienating products. Zeus and Poseidon were no longer mythological Divinities who embodied powerful human desires and passions, but political powers of an alienation that rolled dice to divide the Sky and the Earth among ordinary individuals…

***

Traveling abroad was essential for artists: they confronted one another through art and ART COULD NOT LIE… On the way to my exhibition in Strasbourg, the transit in Munich was the most unexpected delay that had ever happened to me. My four “Female Amphora” paintings were unwrapped, rubbed with a cotton swab by an airport staff member and remained in the open for about 10 minutes, until the staff member reappeared to wish me a good trip along with my paintings that had turned out to be “clean”. During that strange wait, the check-in staff looked at my “nude amphora” paintings, smiled, whispered to one another and asked me whether I was the painter. Their imagination at those moments was not much different from mine. What I was imagining in those moments were narcotics: the control at the airport certainly had to do with narcotics. People used narcotics to take themselves away from the known world, to come into contact with the unknown world, to avoid the reality they had created and enjoy realities they had not created yet. My “female amphoras” were creations as known and unknown as the world itself… but I had not needed narcotics to create them. How different we are sometimes! I imagined people in their natural and stimulated state of trance while they performed at an atelier, in caves, in closed exhibition halls or in open stadiums, and I found myself also wondering at the similarity between me, the travelers and the check-in staff to whom I was explaining the authorship of these creations!

Participation was what was essential to us: given that we created, traveled and confronted one another, it did not matter whether we were beginners in our journeys through the continent, the globe or the universe… everyone has his moment as laboratory and observatory of the universe. During my trips abroad, I had the good fortune, and my moment, to see the Mona Lisa, David and Guernica… Endless art-loving crowds photographed those works to record a memory close to the genius of Creation. In those sublime moments, no one could be deceived by the lie of the outside reality, the copy, the imitation, the substitute. In those sublime moments intuition trampled on every dualistic formula: through the world of every child and every adult, Art represented the human genius that lives the Universe by creating the Self.

In this world as different as it is similar, motherland incorporated everything since the time of genesis. Impatience, avarice and amusement now naturally made up for long suppressed impulses. The fragmentation of culture generated a multiphrenic personality and neotribal tendencies not only in art but also in politics. Amusement parks and small casinos spread like autumn leaves all over the country, as if the winds of the globe were shaking the powerful towers of Disneyland and Las Vegas from time to time. However, the essence remained the same: realities created on foundations of the “os-astragalus46” could never represent the vital self-sufficient reality; Disneyland and Las Vegas themselves would not survive for even 24 hours without the “fuel” of a World History with Imago Dei foundations.

By now, in the revived motherland, I could enjoy everything from the beginning and everything going on and on: the mythological stories of grandfather, the relative horizon where the sky and the sea provided enchanting illusions or the conical towers of the ants that were endlessly leveled to the ground and endlessly rebuilt. I communicated with every corner of the globe and I could hardly believe that this stage of communication with the Universe was real. I gazed on the television screen at the slabs of the 120-million-year-old map47 of Urals and I read with delight the words of Dr. Chuvyrov: “The more I learn, the more I understand that I know nothing”. Was it possible for sophisticated million-year-old maps to crumble like children’s toys in front of this Modest Mankind that “knew nothing?”… I read from Baudrillard about the imperialism of today’s simulators who “try to make reality, all reality, coincide with their simulation models” and I took happiness in a much simpler idea, according to which the models of human simulation imply reality itself, the whole Reality, which is One and Unique.

The philosophy of hyper-reality highly intrigued me, but “reconciling theory with the real and the subject with its own ends” seemed to me to be a process rather than an “impossibility 48”. The World History of Art and Philosophy provided me with the wonderful expression of a unique reality, where the subject completely matched the intention of enlightenment. The human life in the most varied situations, with diverse intentions, with events and facts that did not resemble one another. Everywhere I saw things that belonged to me and thus aroused my interest for or against them; sometimes the Beauty attracted me, sometimes the liveliness, other times even vice could appear as something attractive. I distinguished the gigantic mass of any general interest as it made its way forward with difficulty, but even more often an endless straining of small forces, where something seemingly unimportant could generate majestic effects: an ever diverse tableau, in which at the moment something disappeared, something else would immediately take its place. Under the magic lantern of this endless chain of events, a question naturally arose: is it possible that every event or fact is limited to a separate goal, or on the contrary, under the veil of this outside noise, is a job done and a piece of work created, an internal, silent and secret work which preserves the fundamental force of all these transitory phenomena? In the final analysis, I became fully convinced that the WORLD COULD NEVER BE AN INCIDENTAL VICTIM…”

I intended to be an artist, I wanted to be an artist, I had faith in Art and I could not believe in any “grey goo”, in “ecophagy” or in a “self-devouring” process. The phenomenological drama and comedy of a 5.000 year-old civilization would in no way justify the pessimism of artists with a history at least 30.000 years old of Beautifully Created Realities. Being used to rough roads, and despite the rough roads, I could enjoy everything from the beginning and everything going on in my revived motherland… Cultural tendencies of the time were creating even among Albanians the illusive impression that technology and electronic communication would endanger normal human relations. People hurried, migrated toward the city from anywhere, built legally and illegally, enjoyed themselves, grumbled and were enticed by a single international language. Under the effects of alienation, egotism and temporary power, my fellow citizens were building – following models from across the sea – something “real without reality and without an origin” with its tip going toward the sky. With great vigor and too early, the sons of man were once again confusing a few earthly empires with the UNIVERSE!

AND THE LORD CAME DOWN TO SEE THE CITY AND THE TOWER, WHICH THE SONS OF MAN HAD BUILT… (Genesis – 11)


Featured Photos

Ahriman Gallery R... Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi Jul 20th, 2011 | Comments Off
Ahriman Gallery R... Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi Jul 20th, 2011 | Comments Off
Ahriman Gallery R... Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi Jul 20th, 2011 | Comments Off

Random Photos

Ahriman Gallery R... Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi Jul 20th, 2011 | Comments Off
Vaj-akrilik Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi Apr 24th, 2010 | Comments Off
Vaj-akrilik Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi Apr 24th, 2010 | Comments Off

Top Rated

Vaj-akrilik Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (2 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...
Vaj-Akrilik Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (7 votes, average: 4.57 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...
Vaj-akrilik Posted by author icon Arben Theodhosi
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (2 votes, average: 4.50 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...