When Salman Rusdie said:
"But the overwhelming weight of the problem lies in the world of Islam, and much of it has its roots in the ideological language of blood and war emanating from the Salafist movement within Islam, globally backed by Saudi Arabia." [i]
We could change the words Islam and the backing cpuntry name and the Salafist movement with other relevant extremist movement just as easily and not be far frpm the truth in our globalized world of great bright hope for the future in the mdst of grand old ideological paranoia getting more and more visibly threatening poses of inevitable terrorism to come. His aggressive tone is an extremity in defence of his position as an intellectual, artist writer who had done masterpiecs said to be detrimental to a way of life and an insult to those who are in close identification with those Rushdie criticizes nay condemns.
I understand both sides but I would cross the line to be where Rushdie will be standing but I shall have a heart that will also find bliood in my tears for those on the other. For whatever atrocities they have done we look back in history and find equally horrendous things have been suffered by theira just as well if not more and been mostly perpetrated by those who held the flags of freedom and democracy most high but raping thei lands of these angry society to retaliate in such desperate and violent measures and looking at them all in more details I will bet to ny last dolar it was humiliation and shame that pushed them into their present fearful sad situation.
[i] Salman Rushdie- “The Telegraph, Oct 15/2014
"There is no such a thing as art. There is only invention and creativity. There is no such thing as literature, only imagination and the will to remodel remake recreate the future by understanding our history. The ability to fully accept our wrongs and right them by facing them and willing to be ashamed and apologetic. But do not turn away from mistakes as if we do not make them.”
– “A Country With No Names”
commissioned text for “Files Not Found”,
Palais De Tokyo, Paris, France June 21 2013
If there is one aspect of cultural difference that may take a long time to change between East and West, is that of saving face and the inability to apologize for mistakes that may show a gross inadequate understanding or erroneous judgement on the part of a leader or the revered figure of authority to the social group that look up to the ones seen as wise, flawless and well deserving of the populace’s admiration. This after all is also due to the fear of a “once bitten twice shame” become an irreversible loss of respect hence the chance to be forever defeated from one’s advantageous role.
If only we would see that in fact it is those who admit human failings and quickly make amends for them that rightfully gain our respect, so much of what we waste our time and energy on could be used to better advantage and return our adolescent squabbles, unnecessary games of blame and shame into the much neglected but urgently requiring immediate address to be really in our crises ridden earth full of pressing symptoms of our ills and make time for real discussions of the real problems that are just about to tip us into obscurity if not imminent dangers of extinction by sick self destruction, the way we are actually raping mother earth and of its offerings in terms of bio-diversity and dying for working out the various considerations of eco balance in the consumer culture that will only get a chance if we learn to live consciously with tested ways of self-sustainability.
Instead what we have are the same old same old macho dynasties of cronies thinking their fake objectivity will carry us into a future, so be it bright we gotta wear shades ? did someone say? did you believe that?
The only shades i care to talk about these days is this BLACK SQUARE that we inherited from Malevich.
So yes I shall not pretend to be celebrating but I shall be apologizing profusely that I AM SORRY!
I AM SORRY FOR MY COUNTRY WHO LED ME TO SWEAR MY ALLEGIANCE TO IDEALS THAT FAILED IN UPHOLDING WHAT WE SAID WE WANTED.
I AM SORRY FOR MY COUNTRY WHO LED THE SURROUNDING DEVELOPING COUNTRIES INTO BELIEVING THAT WE HAVE A SHINING PATH TOWARDS A GLORIFIED FUTURE THAT COULD BE AN SHINING EXAMPLE FOR THEM TO FOLLOW SUIT AND EMULATE.
I AM SORRY FOR MY COUNTRY WHO GAVE THE WORLD A CHANCE TO BELIEVE THAT SMALL CAN BE BEAUTIFUL AND YET DID NOT HAVE THE GUTS TO SAY IT WHEN OTHER SMALL NATIONS STOOD UP AGAINST BIG BROTHER BULLIES.
I AM SORRY AND I AM ASHAMED NOT OF MY SELF BUT MY COUNTRY AND IT TOOK AWAY MY NAME FOR I RATHER HAVE ONE I GAVE ME CAUSE THEY ALREADY TOOK AWAY THE TASTE AND THE REASON, IF NOT THE SEASON THAT USED TO BE MINE FOR KEEPS.
I AM SORRY
I AM SORRY
I STILL HAVE A CLEAR FACE WHEN I WAKE UP IN THE MORNING
BUT I AM NOT SO SURE I GOT A VOICE THAT CAN STILL SING….
Roving Eye is the recent exhibition that i took part in. Take it from here not Guggenheim and et al whatever, i m not just saying this because i am in this. but the difference is there for all to see. you can take my work out of it and even forget what i say and just go and see it. Every work here and every artist here have something to say about how we want to reach out to this god forsaken world. The curator is Iola Lenzi, pray she doesn't lose her visa like many other critical cutural workers from other passport lands but very much have hearts that beat in sych with this land, this people here. But why is there no news about? No media attention. If the PR did not reach you You gotta reach them ....
A Black Square for the Little Red Dot
The earth has been changing more than it normally would if she does it by herself without human interventions. It was not so bad in the beginning but the interventions have gone beyond certain limits of tolerance by mother earth. Mostly due to capitalists with power and greed to profit in larger and faster manner. It is up to us to take pro-active measures to prevent this from not only destroy the earth we live in but quite inevitably it leads to our self-destruction. I am not a dreamer so far fetch to see this happening. That the evidences are clear and we need to work together. However there are many possible ways. Just as many ways to detract from the question are even more destructive propositions that offer to address these issues but in fact leading us further astray. There is a need to take heed of the fallacious list of so called pragmatic solutions such as: 1) support the status quo and all will be okay, rock the boat and that is certainty of our own demise. 2) nuclear power is fastest way and new is clean and manageable 3) The military is most important to safeguard peace and security.
1) Democratic systems of representations are easily shaken out of its earlier intentions whenever it leads to centralization of power. It often seems when society get on in general terms of development, the creeping tendency of the centralization of power goes on unabated as the citizens are busy working on improving their own lot and circumstances. Our human heart has always been a battleground for good and evil. I need to keep check of myself all the time and I believe so does the status quo, no matter how innocent or idealistic they were in the beginning but the temptation of evil forces are at work all the time especially when we least expect of it.
2) There is still not a single good solution to take care of nuclear wastes even though they do have ways to hide them temporary. The problem is the more nuclear energy is produced and used the more radioactive wastes is accumulated and we have to deal with. I read time and again how negligent we have been and just one mistake may lead to great sufferings we never imagined could happen. One such example is the shocking news about how some ships were discovered by chance that had been sunken in the middle of the Atlantic ocean and were actually loaded full of nuclear wastes that presumably were taken up by some crook companies to be gotten rid off without proper idea where and how it was to be done and must have conveniently sunk the ship thinking no one will know since the radioactive wastes are all casted in concrete and will take years or centuries before they might cause harm. It had the nonchalant “so who cares?” attitude and as long as it does not happen in our life time. So the logic of safety in the newer designs of nuclear production is only as far as within our life time. But what about the time of our children’s children?
3) As I had said many times before the fact that we had two world wars and the guidance of traditions, religions, and wisdom of the minds who inspired us to its current sophistication and cultural manifestations, need us still maintain our barbaric animal instinct to kill that who is different from our own in order to protect our right to see the continuation of our traditions, our way of life? If there is a God/Allah or whatever name we shall call this higher consciousness, “ultimate reality” (as William James very well name it in comparative studies), surely human beings were put on this earth to celebrate the glory of life through the many diversities of language, culture and manifestations of a global ritual that is regularly set to the rhythm of the daily, monthly, annually animated natural cycles of the stars, moon and the sun through peaceful exchanges country to country, culture to culture, and languages to languages. not by the nozzle or barrel of a gun in the megalomaniac’s intention but by love that was the reason we were put here from the beginning in the singing, dancing, graceful manifestation of a consciousness seeking harmony and understanding as one heart beating joyously next to another without need for power to control the other by fear inducing actions and other destructive means.
I was introduced to artists from other lands first as a child. It was a large book amongst a pile of other books left to us when my father passed away. It was a colourful book of children’s drawings that was the main source of joy whenever I flipped through it. Somehow I still feel a thrill whenever I get a chance to talk about it. I imagine it must have been a kind of catalogue of an exhibition of children’s drawings from all over the world. Whenever I participate in international art events I often find that artists are naturally inclined to talk in very critical extremes and I realize that they often give a picture not so pleasant when we compare them to what we hear and read about in the mass media. It is not just a matter of self-victimizing in order to gain sympathy but an underlying worry as most of them are sensitive people who care about their society that they are more harsh than expected.
Added to that we want others to know the discrepancies we offer is not to put ourselves down but to share the knowledge first hand and remind others that we all live in a complex world that needs mutual respect and understanding. To be a good friend is to understand their pains and sufferings too and not only to celebrate joys and successes.