POST-CRISIS POETICS: T.C. Marshall, A Secret Agent, a Spaceman, & a Talking Bear: A Theory of Doubling the Stakes in Poetry

As we choose and argue over our ways of making art, over the uses of our tools, we re-enact the policing of the world at large. Heriberto Yépez has laid this all out sharply in his provocatively pointed “Notes on art’s crap.” In this part of his work “Against the Police-Concept of Art,” Yépez delightfully excoriates our dominant art world and indicts its aestheticisms. He has taken ideas like Rancière’s to the next level, and outdone him on all counts. The re-incorporation of severed parts of society may have been Whitman’s game, as the telling it slant was Dickinson’s, and the reaching to include other mindsets was Rimbaud’s and Mallarmé’s, and all are praised as “politics” by Rancière in his literary criticism, but art polices itself too—through us, the artists. Art’s function, Yépez says, “is to sabotage individual discontent and prevent violent collective explosions” by balancing our work against the art-world games of being heard and choosing what to hear, just as the management of finance tries to do with the other crises in our world through devaluations. It is our accounting of the world that polices it. As Heriberto writes: “Every element of art polices the others,” and “Police is the ruling concept of art.” To assert that artworks “are part of the pacification apparatus” where “you are supposed to be the detective who finds additional meanings in art and never finds the police and the crime” is almost funny in the way it frames us, but it leads him to an abrupt fierce conclusion about our arts:  – T.C. Marshall

Art will not change. Art will not change art. Art will not change the world. The world needs to destroy art. The transformation of the world will involve the destruction of every form of art. Art’s self-destruction is not enough.  – Heriberto Yépez

Source: POST-CRISIS POETICS: T.C. Marshall, A Secret Agent, a Spaceman, & a Talking Bear: A Theory of Doubling the Stakes in Poetry

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