Jan Sowa

Dialectics of design or the unbearable persistence of the Avant-garde

TYPO Berlin 2015 Character | Thursday, 21 May | 2:00 pm | Hall | English

Contemporary creative endeavour – design as much as art– remains trapped between two seemingly contradictive yet equally strong tendencies: the avant-garde aspiration to shape the social world in a progressive, emancipatory way and the market urge to adjust to commercial exigencies of globalised, neoliberal turbo-capitalism. They both stem from the avant-garde cleavage and as such they have been both present for almost a century now. None of them can get stabilised as a finally dominant force, yet none of them can get completely eliminated neither. It’s their dialectical interplay and tension that constitute the most important characteristic of modern artistic creation.

Jan Sowa

Jan Sowa

Sociologist, Philosopher, Design Critic (Warsaw)

Contemporary creative endeavour – design as much as art– remains trapped between two seemingly contradictive yet equally strong tendencies: the avant-garde aspiration to shape the social world in a progressive, emancipatory way and the market urge to adjust to commercial exigencies of globalised, neoliberal turbo-capitalism. They both stem from the…

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