Readings — From the December 2012 issue

One-point Perspective

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From This Is Yellowism, the website of Marcin Lodyga and Vladimir Umanets. In October, Umanets took credit for writing “Vladimir Umanets ’12, a potential piece of yellowism” on a painting by Mark Rothko at London’s Tate Modern museum.

feelings
In the context of yellowism every feeling is a definition of yellow, every emotion expresses yellow only. Sadness is about yellow and happiness is about yellow, too. Pain is considered a pure expression of yellow, orgasm as well.

listen to young dictators
Consider yellowism as a totalitarian system. Everything is about yellow—this is the order, the final solution. You have to accept the only possible way of seeing things. This way and no other way. If you don’t want to accept the fact that in yellowistic chambers you can see only pure expressions of yellow color, don’t worry, the young “dictators,” Lodyga and Umanets, will not send you to a gas chamber (btw, if a gas chamber were placed inside a yellowistic chamber then it would be about yellow). If you try to reject the existence of the new phenomenon then you better just go back to your ordinary reality or go to an art gallery where you can enjoy the diversity of meanings, symbols, and references.

one and many
Yellowism is not against interpretation, but yellowism gives only one interpretation. Every piece of yellowism is about yellow and nothing more. The lack of different interpretations is not the lack of interpretation. Every piece of yellowism has exactly the same content. All pieces of yellowism are interpretable because all are about yellow and express yellow; however, the content is not obvious (blatant) for humans. If for humans the fact that inside yellowism everything is about yellow were obvious and blatant, then it would mean that human perception was radically changed.

oh my god!
A monkey doesn’t distinguish between contexts. A monkey jumps on a chair in an apartment in the context called reality, ordinary reality, where objects are useful. A monkey jumps on a chair placed in an art gallery (in the context of art), where a chair has meanings: a chair can be, for example, about love, war, death, existence, art itself, etc. But a monkey doesn’t see any sense when looking at a chair; it jumps on the chair like in the apartment. Also, when a monkey jumps on a chair in a yellowistic chamber, it doesn’t see that a chair in the context of yellowism is about yellow and expresses yellow only. It just wants to jump (or sit in a funny monkey way) on a chair. But you, do you see the difference? It’s time to clearly and radically distinguish between contexts. Even if sometimes the context of art matches the context of reality or the borders between them are very blurred, you still need to know what art is and what everyday reality is. Also you have to know what yellowism is. If one day art equals reality and therefore there is no art and no reality anymore, yellowism will still be a different context, a separate territory. If art disappeared and reality disappeared, if both were transformed into “aRteality” or something like that, then there would still be yellowism. Imagine that yellowism is the only context that exists and you don’t need to distinguish anymore. No art, no ordinary reality (no “aRteality,” either), just yellowism, the whole universe is like one huge yellowistic chamber, all and everything is flattened to yellow. What would you say in such an ontological situation? Will you say, “Oh my God!”?

all and everything
Imagine that you are a guide in an art gallery similar to the Tate Modern in London; people follow you and you explain, “This work here is about yellow and expresses yellow and nothing more. The next work made by X is about yellow and expresses yellow and nothing more, and this work of art made by Y is about yellow and expresses yellow and nothing more.” According to you, all of the (let’s say thousand) different exhibited works are about yellow and express yellow and nothing more. So people ask, “Are you blind and stupid? You equated, as some dictator would, the whole richness of meanings, symbols, references (and also the lack of meanings) to a single expression, so . . . fuck off!” Immediately after this indictment they would kill you. :-) That could not happen in a large yellowistic chamber. In the yellowistic chamber, people aware of the context in which they are located would say that you are right.

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