We are all products and manufacturers of various kinds of ugliness. Whether that is in our work, our social lives, our expectations or our interactions, when we draw a line, refuse one another, build definitions and boundaries, in-groups and out-groups, we share in the ugliness, we become part of the problem.
Who are the ‘kids’. We are the kids, our work is the kids, the future is the kids. There are many kinds of child, many kinds of creative progeny. There is the next generation of society that we produce by our behaviour, the excesses of the eighties and the sidelong irony of the nineties led to now, and the warped, insecure state of affairs we live in, fat sleek consumers squabbling over the choicest bits of meat.
In creating art, another kind of child, we make something of ourselves, from ourselves, and we treat it as sacred. We preference it over the other kids, we give it the best, we protect it from criti- cism, we spoil it. Sometimes we beat it, and berate it, we punish it for not being as good as we thought it was going to be. We blame others rather than ourselves when our kids turn out ugly, we try to distance ourselves from the problem, accuse others, point fingers.
But the buck stops, eventually, with us. We want simple answers, someone to take the fall, a focal point on which blame can be concentrated. But the world is not so simple. We are all complicit in how things are now, we passively maintain the status quo, the art school, the nation, the institu- tion, we would rather tomorrow be pretty much like today than invest the energy to change it.
We are the reason our kids are so ugly, and so are you...