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« Movies, Painting | Main | Theory of Amazon 1 »

August 17, 2002

Times passes, art changes

Friedrich --

I just killed a little time reading a magazine cover story (by Joe Morgenstern) from 1970 about Barbra Streisand. (Not someone I'm prone to think much about.) It was lovely -- evocative, intelligent, knowledgeable about acting, movies and music while being modest about how much can really be said about how and why something works and something else doesn't. Brainy, unpretentious, and full of feeling. A civilized pleasure.

Darn it, what happened to all that? I get depressed from time to time by the fact that the art, media and entertainment worlds have changed so much from what they were when I got interested in them. These days I'm often not just uninterested in them, I recoil from them. They seem like (almost) completely different creatures from what they once were, all about product, packaging, business, effects, personalities -- pure aggression, in other words, with the only alternatives seeming to be, yawn, politics or a kind of dreary, attitude-copping self-expression.

Who cares? Generally speaking, not me. "I might as well have gotten an MBA," is what tends to run through my brain at such (unfortunately not-rare) moments.

Is this unique to the last 30 years? Was there that dramatic a sea change in the nature of art-and-entertainment during the previous couple of decades? Am I just getting old and running out of gas?



posted by Michael at August 17, 2002


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