VHX is proud to present BEAUTY IS EMBARRASSING, a documentary about the artist Wayne White. Support Wayne and the filmmakers by buying the film, DRM-free, from beautyisembarrassing.com.
“One of the most pleasurable moviegoing experiences I’ve had this year.”
BEAUTY IS EMBARRASSING is a funny, irreverent and inspiring documentary tracing the career of one of America’s most influential artists, Wayne White. It’s hard not to recognize his iconic work on Pee-Wee’s Playhouse in the ‘80s, and equally hard not to fall in love with his artistic process and how he came into it.
While you’re watching it, you’ll have a hard time resisting an urge to get some artwork for yourself!
Collectivist understandings of self and social group have been increasingly displaced by individualistic notions premised on the self as consumer. The prevailing culture of individualism and competitiveness has given free rein to an end-of-millennium capitalism which seems increasingly out of control and unaccountable. The social groups who have had to pay the highest price for these developments are the traditional and the new working classes - the poor, manual workers, the unemployed, the low-paid in the service sectors and lonemother families. Competition and individualism are all about hierarchy and pecking order in which the individual rather than her circumstances are judged. The working classes are no longer entitled to a sense of unfairness because everything from their financial situation and the state of their health to their children’s schooling has been repackaged under late capitalism as the responsibility of the individual alone.
Diane Reay, The Double-Bind of the ‘Working-Class,’ Feminist Academic (via humanformat)
Or, the conflation of individual freedom with being a selfish asshole …
To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting.
Against criticism a man can neither protest nor defend himself; he must act in spite of it, and then it will gradually yield to him.
I can believe things that are true and things that aren’t true and I can believe things where nobody knows if they’re true or not. I can believe in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and the Beatles and Marilyn Monroe and Elvis and Mister Ed. Listen - I believe that people are perfectable, that knowledge is infinite, that the world is run by secret banking cartels and is visited by aliens on a regular basis, nice ones that look like wrinkled lemurs and bad ones who mutilate cattle and want our water and our women. I believe that the future sucks and I believe that the future rocks and I believe that one day White Buffalo Woman is going to come back and kick everyone’s ass. I believe that all men are just overgrown boys with deep problems communicating and that the decline in good sex in America is coincident with the decline in drive-in movie theaters from state to state. I believe that all politicians are unprincipled crooks and I still believe that they are better than the alternative. I believe that California is going to sink into the sea when the big one comes, while Florida is going to dissolve into madness and alligators and toxic waste. I believe that antibacterial soap is destroying our resistance to dirt and disease so that one day we’ll all be wiped out by the common cold like martians in War of the Worlds. I believe that the greatest poets of the last century were Edith Sitwell and Don Marquis, that jade is dried dragon sperm, and that thousands of years ago in a former life I was a one-armed Siberian shaman. I believe that mankind’s destiny lies in the stars. I believe that candy really did taste better when I was a kid, that it’s aerodynamically impossible for a bumble bee to fly, that light is a wave and a particle, that there’s a cat in a box somewhere who’s alive and dead at the same time (although if they don’t ever open the box to feed it it’ll eventually just be two different kinds of dead), and that there are stars in the universe billions of years older than the universe itself. I believe in a personal god who cares about me and worries and oversees everything I do. I believe in an impersonal god who set the universe in motion and went off to hang with her girlfriends and doesn’t even know that I’m alive. I believe in an empty and godless universe of causal chaos, background noise, and sheer blind luck. I believe that anyone who says sex is overrated just hasn’t done it properly. I believe that anyone who claims to know what’s going on will lie about the little things too. I believe in absolute honesty and sensible social lies. I believe in a woman’s right to choose, a baby’s right to live, that while all human life is sacred there’s nothing wrong with the death penalty if you can trust the legal system implicitly, and that no one but a moron would ever trust the legal system. I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens when you’re alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it.
I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. Each of us must learn to work not just for oneself, one’s own family or nation, but for the benefit of all humankind. Universal responsibility is the key to human survival. It is the best foundation for world peace.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not.
Friedrich Nietzsche (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900) was a German philosopher of the late 19th century who challenged the foundations of Christianity and traditional morality. He was interested in the enhancement of individual and cultural health, and believed in life, creativity, power, and the realities of the world we live in, rather than those situated in a world beyond. Central to his philosophy is the idea of “life-affirmation,” which involves an honest questioning of all doctrines that drain life’s expansive energies, however socially prevalent those views might be. Often referred to as one of the first existentialist philosophers along with Søren Kierkegaard (1813–1855), Nietzsche’s revitalizing philosophy has inspired leading figures in all walks of cultural life, including dancers, poets, novelists, painters, psychologists, philosophers, sociologists and social revolutionaries.
Posted via email from Joshua Oakley - Dreams Poetry Visions Imagination Beauty | Comment »
Jeroen van Valkenburg - The Golden Bough