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The Violence of Indifference

2019

IMAGES WHERE THERE IS NOTHING TO SEE

There lies the dilemma: either simulation is irreversible, there is no going beyond simulation, it is no longer even an event, it is our absolute banality, it is an everyday obscenity, we are in terminal nihilism, and are preparing ourselves for a mindless repetition of all the forms of our culture, waiting for an unpredictable event — but where would it come from? Or there is an art of simulation, an ironic quality that resuscitates the appearances of the world each time to destroy them. Otherwise art would do nothing more, as it often does today, than work over its own corpse. The same cannot be continuously added to the same ad infinitum: that is poor simulation. The same must be torn from the same. Each image must take away from the reality of the world, something must disappear in each image, but one must not give in to the temptation of annihilation, of definitive entropy, the disappearance must remain active: that is the secret of art and seduction.

These are literally images that leave no trace. They have no aesthetic consequences to speak of. However, behind of each of them, something has disappeared. There lies their secret, if they have one, and there lies the secret of simulation. On the horizon of simulation, not only has the real world disappeared, but the very question of its existence has no meaning.

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Text: Jean Baudrillard, The Conspiracy of Art, 2005


Posted: July 2019
Category: Research