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The 4th Manifesto of the group “Leviathan”

Art in our times has ceased to live by its future.
The Future which is the motor of all motion ceased to fulfill any function at all.Striving for money and petty power became the aim not only of ordinary people but artists as well. Their thoughts and energy are completely taken up by this.
The servant golem is now the master of life and of art itself.
In the past the market too often betrayed even the greatest artists. Now it has turned into the one and only benchmark by which the name of the creator should be measured.
Professional criteria have been cast aside.
The present-day consumer has no use for the artist’s talent, or for the quality of his creation.
The work of art is only one among a multitude of other commodities traded daily on the bourse where billions of dollars exchange hands.
Good is what sells well.
The world has come to this conclusion long ago, but art always held it in contempt. No longer so! Now it is the leading tendency of the day.
Artists have placed themselves at a mercy of those who would regard as art anything which they choose to name art. But if anything is art, then nothing is art.
Museums are cowardly following artists in this betrayal of art.

What can one do to fight this plague?
How can artist regain his freedom?
How can he become relevant to society?
How not become stuck in the stale and putrid mud in one company with the well-adjusted masses who are far removed from all modern activity and direction in art?

Aesthetic achievements alone would not do.
One needs something more global and universal with the quality and meaning married together to create new philosophy of human existence and behavior.
Once there was a time when art clad in the rags of social purpose tried to substitute literature. Now even this is nowhere to be seen.
Now art is synonymous with emptiness and indifference.
The great majority of contemporary art creations are suicidal and depressive. In fact their message is death.
However this dance of death was created not by artists or even intellectual charlatans at the service of art.
Death is first and foremost the message of a new European ideology. This ideology is part and parcel of the Socialist and Social Democratic tendencies which ostensibly prevailed in the political give and take of the European life in the last fifty years. It led to the total degradation of political morality and instilled in the minds of the masses that are unable and unwilling to make a real and realistic reckoning an imperative of total moral and political neutrality, total empathy and sympathy with every violence and destruction, total lack of distinction between normative members of society and all sorts of deviants and criminals.
This suicidal ideology is called political correctness.
He who loves all and every does not love anyone.
He who pities the murderer tortures the victim.
Contemporary art is only a faint picture the amoebic state of the European society which surrenders one line of defense after another to the third world hordes.
In this third world the way of life is violence and death.
Untold cohorts of occupiers swarm like termites from the third world towards all nerve centers of our civilization.
It is not the barbarians who conquered the Roman Empire. The Roman culture in its decline and degradation succeeded in leaching all calcium from the bones of the Roman soldiers.
It is not the third world with its Islam at the head who conquers the European civilization. It is Europe itself, tired and listless, surrenders itself, step by step, to the mercy of a giant brainless and merciless octopus.
The solution lies in the creative potential of the society, in arts, sciences and technologies.
They rest upon free thought in all its forms which is the only real antidote to the coming triumph of anti-humanity.

What about the position of the artist?
What qualities should characterize any art, if it is to fit into the overall project of salvation?
The triumph of post-modernism brought in its wake a triumph of universal equanimity and impunity. One is entitled to anything and everything! A real paradise of idiots and nincompoops! If in the past new directions in style and concepts had to fight for survival, now it is no longer necessary. No proofs, theories, powers of persuasion or analysis are needed.
This false comfort results in decay and disintegration.
Art critics and historians have availed themselves of a new pseudo-intellectual jargon devoid of any sense or sinew. Words no longer have any meaning at all. Clarity and distinction of thought are no longer present in this discourse.
Those who pontificate on the questions of art form a kind of a closed dim-witted caste of mendacious “you-scratch-my-back-I-scratch-yours!” pundits.
Putrefaction of social thought leads to putrefaction of art.
However, in my view there is, definitely, a backward connection as well: resurrection of art will bring with it a recovery of society.
What we offer is a universal scheme easily available to everyone for trial and experiment.
Even before he starts working on a piece of art the artist must pose a question: “What is it I want to say? What revolts me in the society? What do I want to change? What is there in my society that is mendacious, unjust or simply vile? What compels us to this life of utter hopelessness and misery?”
In other words, the artist’s work, paradoxically, should begin from a very different corner of the universe. If the artistic work is carried out correctly, both solutions, that of Galileo and that of Ptolemy, will bring the same result.

The starting point could lie anywhere: in literature, economics or any other domain.
This starting point, no matter how far, seemingly, removed from art, will accompany the process of creation and the finished work.
This social concept in order to be absorbed by the viewer should be welded to the special plastic feeling of the material, expressed in the language of artistic form and function within the framework of the visual system proper to our time.
A man’s intellectual prowess begins to exert influence when it goes hand in hand with strong feeling.
Highly diverse genres of visual creative activity might become aesthetically valid and begin to accumulate artistic experience, like those that nowadays function mostly as simple visual aids, expressive or expletive venues, means of communication or information, like political caricatures, posters, placards, advertisements, magazine ads, graffiti, pictures in women’s magazines, erotic and porno cards, historical or official depictions of political and other personages etc.
All these must and should be utilized. New and now real life can be brought to these images, but this time starting from ethical premises.
But, be it as it may, the artist can start, at any moment of time, from a completely clear, maiden sheet of canvas or paper or wooden or metal form and begin to create ex nihilo, as it were, improvising in any direction prompted by none of the intellectual advisors of his time or environment.
The tenets of “art for art’s sake” may serve the function of a useful subconscious vitamin.

Aesthetics reinforced with ethical notions might become the force which will, like Atlas, withstand the heavy weight of the concepts included into the system.
The notions of beauty and perfection which were driven underground should be brought back into the discourse of art.
The ever present danger and paradox is that all sorts of conservative eclectic thinkers present themselves as the only guardians of truth in representation while they are its grave-diggers.
A symbol of the contemporary European culture is an image made of elephant shit by one of the more popular African charlatans who better than all philosophers understood the essence, spirit and letter of a normal statistical intellectual of our times.
One can best answer this by quoting the words of a man whom people use as their God: “Let the dead bury their dead”.

We should be responsible, as long as we are alive, to make at least one effort towards saving our own souls.

Tel Aviv, March 2008

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