By Peter Abbs
Instantly provocative and inspiring, opposed to the Flow is a piece of polemic from an the world over revered author and philosopher on arts schooling. Peter Abbs argues that modern schooling ignores the cultured and moral due to being in thrall to such forces because the industry economic system and managerial and useful dictates. He identifies the current schooling approach as being inimical to creativity and actual studying and as an alternative, narrowly interested by the quantitative measuring of effects. This absence of an artistic and moral measurement in schooling has implications for artwork making in wider society. artwork is proven as rising from, and attractive to, the ironic postmodernist sensibility and mass media-led tradition, whereas being with out philosophical importance. This e-book opens up a clean and well timed debate in regards to the very important strength of creativity in glossy schooling. Drawing on examples from sleek poetry, literature and visible artwork, it truly is an eloquent and passionate argument for the necessity to increase moral and aesthetic energies to confront the becoming vacuity of up to date tradition.
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Additional info for Against the Flow: Education, the Art and Postmodern Culture
Consider, for example, the way in which the artist Max Beckmann (see Plate 2) envisaged the artist’s task in his Self-portrait with a Glass Ball (1956). As an art-maker, Beckmann holds rather protectively the round green mandala which it is his burden and privilege both to make and to bear. His alchemical work makes what is broken whole and what is ordinary magical. In a lecture given in 1938 Max Beckmann was to declare: Art is creative for the sake of realisation, not for amusement; for transﬁguration, not for the sake of play.
The chances are it will not happen; but it is also true that the power of the spirit works in startling ways and what is repressed now, constellating in the unconscious, can suddenly be released and transform what, until that unpredicted historic moment, looked like the inevitable and unchanging state of things. This has been the story of western culture. So there is some reason for hope. Moreover, within the Community of Recognition itself, nothing can quite expunge the transcendental moments of educational advance and inner enlightenment.
For example, no analysis of facial muscles and their operations could ever disclose the meaning of a smile. No analysis of brain tissue could ever disclose the quintessential nature of a living thought or of the import of an ethical category such as justice, hope or goodness. The smile, as with the thought or moral category, can only be understood through human recognition. Any expression of consciousness requires a comparable act of consciousness for its understanding. Here, without doubt, the deconstructing and relativizing elements of postmodernists have had an important part to play in pulling down the grand narratives and metaphysical pretensions of science with its totalitarian tendency to assume it could interpret every kind of problem.
Against the Flow: Education, the Art and Postmodern Culture by Peter Abbs