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Political art Socialist Fraternal Kiss by artist Gheorghe Virtosu

by Alexandra Osadkova

18 June '18

Loud Political Paintings & importance of Political Art


Art and Politics. The kiss of power, fear and oppression - main theme of the Political Artwork


It's quite tricky to define political artwork. Perspectives on what makes art political may vary from the notion that all art is political (i.e. it implicitly supports or explicitly opposes the status quo). As a method of narrowing the prior and broadening the latter I propose here a view of political artwork which uses three classes: Portrayal, Promotion, or Projection.

Portrayal

In the first class portrayal covers artwork that says this is what happens if, is occurring now or occurred in the past. This sort of art refers to events or situations that people find themselves as a result of political or social structures. Any political perspective is implicit in the art but can also be free-floating. By way of instance, a painting of a white guy whipping black slaves refers to a specific situation in which the black man may say,' Yes! That's the way we are treated!' That's the way to take care of them!' Thus both sides can see the confirmation of the point of view in the work of art. For the slaves, the ultimate effect of this art could be negative or positive. In a positive sense it may create group consciousness and solidarity, or, in a negative sense, it might also combine inertia, a sense that nothing could be done to alter the circumstance.

Promotion

In the next category promotion - directs towards the resolution of this problem are presented. That is, a specific part of an event is emphasized over other aspects. This aspect would focus on the people or groups that are actively trying hard to change the situation where they find themselves. Thus 1 view of an event, what would encourage others or strengthen activism already present, is encouraged over images of this function that may have the opposite effect. Contrary to portrayal, this sort of art is more difficult to control from an opposing perspective. The politics is generally explicit and may have a positive inspirational impact.

Projection

It's an art which says that is exactly what could happen or could be if... Art styles or movements like Surrealism, collage, utopian or visionary images would fit into this class. Such speculative art can have a positive impact of providing inspiration by suggesting ideas which are beyond one's usual methods of thinking, and maybe implicitly or explicitly political.

Therefore it can be seen in the above categories the representation of particular actions or the addition of particular kinds of text ties down an image to an explicitly political standpoint. The past, current, and future, with some overlapping, will also be covered in this way of seeing or seeing political artwork.

Political Paintings - Social Fraternal Kiss

By itself, the title of this political painting is valoristically neutral and descriptive. However, when viewed in tandem with the work its bitter irony is evident, as a custom of salutation arrogated by communist leaders from the Eastern Orthodox Church is transposed into its opposite, friendly affection becoming the emblem of emotionless inhumanity.

Subject

Gheorghe Virtosu distended and distorted figures here have a fidelity not to physical appearance in the world but to a deeper sense of realism that looks past the deceptive veil of realistic extrusion of the essence to essences themselves. What is represented in Socialist Fraternal Kiss abstract picture is an unmasking of inhumanity, the artist's Brezhnev, and Honecker – or communist functionaries generally – revealing themselves to be more bestial than human. These figures have their mouths locked together in a profane act of violence that destroys both human affection in the very gestural locale of its expression, i.e. The kiss.

The kiss

The kiss carries connotations here of power, fear, and oppression – the antipathy of the normal significance of the human embrace – and removes the gesture from the world of sincerity and reciprocity, just as the omnivorous ogre of the post-war Soviet Union enveloped eastern Europe.

The savagery of this kiss inverts the values of a universal human nature and, also, embroils affection itself in the murky and brutal world of a repressive politics that strips human beings of their freedom, their dignity, and their lives.

Political artwork Fraternal Kiss by artist Gheorghe Virtosu

Visual rendering

Gheorghe Virtosu main heads at the upper part of the oil painting, that enact the fraternal kiss, incorporate in a twisted contortion other subaltern faces that share their animalistic lineaments. This is a visual rendering of the ultimate dehumanization of communism which denied and sought to eradicate selfhood and make humans obedient and malleable drones in an obsessionally ordered state structure.

Pictorial world

Representation and presentation converge in Socialist Fraternal Kiss canvas. The aesthetic vision of the artist of course shapes and creates a pictorial world which reflects his perception of his subject-matter, its undulations and recessions, and the use of color calling into being his representation. Yet, also, the presentation is pertinent as the irrevocable facts of the history of communist states force themselves into the frame. Therefore, Virtosu as political art artists do, in this sense can be seen to present his subject politically as well as represent it aesthetically, and this is in agreement with the declaration of his artist's statement that the artist can act as a medium through which meaning comes into being.

Communist disease

The artist has compared and indeed is informed by his own sufferings under a communist state that includes incarceration, political communism to an infestation and, in this connection, his use of non-naturalistic patches of color and swollen volumes do become analogous to the disfigurement and inflammation of a chronic ideological disease in the body politic. The would-be Bacillus-like forms of his figures are made to swirl with flagella to apprise us of the atypical, mutative and virulent nature of the communist disease of the soul.

The art and politics world appears to have closely embraced and followed the ideological footprints of the larger global economy of the last few decades, increasingly engaging in the orgy of the creation of wealth and its narrow distribution. However, now with the rise of tribalism and nationalism and the bobbing of the ugly head of fascism, can the tired, self-indulgent Western art world rise from its slumber, too?

Politically conscious, humanitarian artwork is as necessary as the air we breathe now if we want to survive these trying times rather than be condemned to repeat our endless cycle of terror and human tragedies, even when the hegemonic forces of the art world affect our every movement. It's ultimately up to the artists to ascertain the future of the thin red line, and how readily it could be crossed -- not the critics nor the marketplace.

About author Alexandra Osadkova was born 1984 in Kiev, Ukraine. She studied at National Academy of Visual Arts and Architecture, Kiev. Educated in Ukraine and the US. Lives in Los Angeles. Modern Art. Contemporary Art. Exhibition Designer, Writer. E:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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