The Magic of the Cities.

Zen promotes the rediscovery of the obvious, which is so often lost in its familiarity and simplicity. It sees the miraculous in the common and magic in our everyday surroundings. When we are not rushed, and our minds are unclouded by conceptualizations, a veil will sometimes drop, introducing the viewer to a world unseen since childhood. ~ John Greer

Tuesday, May 27, 2014



Kitsch gets a lot of attention in The Unbearable Lightness of Being, so you should make sure you understand the basic concept. Kitsch is a German word that's been adopted by a number of other languages, including English. It refers primarily to art that is overly sentimental or melodramatic, and so refers to aesthetics. What's interesting is the way Kundera uses the concept in his novel, not to talk about art, but to talk about political ideology.

To begin, Kundera asserts that kitsch is an aesthetic ideal "in which shit is denied and everyone acts as though it did not exist". He's not just speaking literally here, but about all the bad, disgusting, negative, violent, depressing things in the world. "Kitsch excludes everything from its purview which is essentially unacceptable in human existence".

Kundera then moves on to politics. "Kitsch is the aesthetic ideal of all politicians and all political parties and movements," he says. He gives the example of politicians kissing babies as the ultimate kitschy political move. 

So how does one fight kitsch? One answer has its roots in the original, artistic definition of kitsch as sentimental or hokey art. From this perspective, beauty is the enemy of kitsch. The other answer has its roots in the political definition of kitsch as forced conformity. In this sense, someone who insists on individuality is the enemy of kitsch.
Milan Kundera - The Unbearable Lightness of Being

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lorik said...

The window dresser is obviously an artist as is the photographer:) Stunning pic!

Katrin Klink said...

A perfect windows display. My favourite is the black top at the left - what a combination. And you can't never have enough silver shoes!

Marty said...

Carraol yes this is really kitsch
and never I could wear such a dress and silver shoes !
but I must say that all this is pretty with the music and I imagine the dancers very well turning with their yellow dresses !
I like this post and valse ! said...

A little shop of horrors! But i truly like the picture - well spotted!

Jim said...

an interesting display