‘Culture’ is fuelled by forms of extravagance.

“We condemn extravagance that is wasteful or tasteless and yet we tour monuments of past extravagance, such as the Forbidden City in Beijing or the palace at Versailles, as highly admirable. The truth is that much of what we call ‘culture’ is fuelled by forms of extravagance.” (…)   Source > Aeon.com. – Atelier : Art and ideas. – Painting > Interior with Two Girls by Peter Ilsted, 1904.

The good life is the simple life. On retrouve souvent ce thème en peinture,  ce désir de pureté retrouvé, cet idéal d’extase et de vie primitive. Dans ce désir utopique de vie “simple” on peut citer le cas de Gauguin qui part à Tahiti  en 1891, pour échapper à “cette lutte européenne après l’argent”, pour être “libre enfin”.

Why is living the simple life so hard ?

In pre-modern times, the discrepancy between what the philosophers advised and how people lived was not so great. Wealth provided security, but even for the rich wealth was flimsy protection against misfortunes such as war, famine, disease, injustice and the disfavour of tyrants. (…)  Read : Aeon.com /  Photo : Andreas Gursky.


Continue reading