Camerica, Puppy Art and the Rest that Glow in the Dark
Today the term “global” can no longer constitute a serious topic for an in depth intellectual discussion because it simply means “Camerica”. Of course this new term, slightly different from the original, has new connotations. It emerged as an illusion empire that aims controls us from our (eye) balls. But whatever the full list of the references are, after the following sentence; “...you are either with US or you are a terrorist” the world enters into a new bilaterallium. In this era “Camerica” stated itself as the ultimate the capital and hence “all the rest” become “local.”
In other words, today, everything that is not at the Camerica is “periphery.” All the ex-world powers (cultures) like Russia, Germany, France and Japan have become the members of this ‘bush-league’. This “either...or” statement does not leave a room for the third parties. The second crucial point, which I want to present, is “even if you are with Camerica or very, very much for Camerica that will never make you a Camerican.”
The first crucial point emerges not only from the definition of Camerica but also from the definition of its rival(s) or enemy(s). Because there is no (real) rival or (existing) enemy! There is no serious proof that a real threat actually exists! There is a bi-lateral re-description of the World but the term terrorist is very blurry, so blurry that it is just void. So it can mean anything and at the same time nothing. And when you can not define the evil, the bad and the ugly you can not define the good. The scapegoats are all so virtual that we can therefore easily state that; Camerica does not exist.
This new paradigm also proposes a greater understanding of the ‘local.’ The whole world that is not of Camerica becomes local. Still we can talk about multiple levels of locality, briefly in two basic levels: Locals as terrorists versus locals as puppies. (Here, I am using the term ‘puppy’ referring to George Michael’s recent video “Shoot the Dog”, 2002. In the video Blair was illustrated as a cartoon character as the cute dog; the Puppy).
This new restructuring of the center/ periphery relations also reflects directly to the arts. As no one can criticize Camerica, a new art genre emerges which we can openly call ‘puppy art’ in reference to the Camerican Jefff Kunst. The once cultural capitals are now converted into provinces. For example today, Paris is just an exotic place next to the Cameraland amusement park. The “once international” Biennials, for example, the Venice Biennial is nothing more than a local art event. You must have either a Camerican curator or a Sponsor to make it happen. Also in the area of literature not only the minor accents but also “the once major” cultures/ languages like German, Slavic, Italian or Turkish are becoming endangered species when encountering the electronic Camerican language. The W.W.W. is converted into a large intranet controlled by a Camerican Nanny. In this transformation only the non existing- terrorists remain unaffected. Many, many cultures are ignored if not destroyed.
In between the puppies and the terrorist, there is also a long list of local countries that receive a terrorist treatment – as they can be considered a terrorist any time any where. So you have to watch them with satellite cameras, get their photos and finger prints in advance like a criminals. And still as if nothing had happened they have to smile at the camera before entering into Camerica. It is the artists of those countries that shine the most in this dark scene maybe because they are being scanned by Garrret Super Scanners many times a day. Not only in airports but also in shopping malls, art school and historic museums. It is this high dose of daily radiation that triggers a wider attention.
OK. How did we get trapped into this ‘post-post modern’ situation? In the modern sense, it was the revolutions that trigger the evolution. But at the end of the post modern period we started to see that terror is marking the shift and even claiming the lead. That is not good. But it is the Camerica which is responsible for the destruction (or control) of the – all other possible- revolutionary forces. At the turn of the Millenium, Camerica proposed us a pseudo revolution that made us expect a new shift, maybe with the help of new technology (electronic and/ or bio- technology). However what we (are allowed to) have as “new” is only the robots that are being used in the destruction of the Babylon.
As today there is no global, no terrorist and there is no Camerica, we can not really talk about dialogue. Still we can insist on talking about the virtual-monologue of Camerica, the virtual-monologue of the puppies and the virtual- monologue of the terrorists. And the “glocal/ogue” can only exist as a new form of cancer; we inhale in, as we all together smoke to demand to be Camerican.