Thursday, July 27, 2006

In his Kit.blog :: Design the well-known romanian graphic-designer Paul Kit, compare the SDPR initiative with a communistic law, thats mean a dictatorial and undemocratic regulation. Indeed, a regulation that maybe unconstitutional by several articles, and with no counterpart in the whole democratic word in the actual version, could be designated as dictatorial. I have asked myself, (as former design-teacher in some highschools and akademies) , if there are examples in the history of design, where designers have been punished by law, for their free activity. So, dear Kit, the found situations:
Number 1:- 1933 in the nazi Germani, Hitler and NSDAP (national-socialist, n.b.) closed the famous and freedom-oriented Bauhaus (as "degenerative" and "jewish" art....), but this was not the end of story! In the same time (also 1931-1934) the Nazi's prepared theirs own creative association as follow: In 1931 Konrad Nonn, Alexander von Senger, Eugen Honig, German Bestelmeyer and Paul Schultze-Naumburg were deputized in the National Socialist fight against modern architecture, in a para-governmental propaganda unit called "Kampfbund deutscher Architekten und Ingenieure" (Militant Society of German Architects and Ingenieurs). The direct-election method of the Presidential Board was vorbidden, instead the board was elected by the "Fuehrer-prinzip" (indirect elections method). From this point on, began the systematical destruction of the free association forms. As simple observation, we must underlinde that the forced apartenence of the creators in this association was also inducted (facilitated) by the folowing situation: because of the economical crisis and increasing political intolerance, some german-typical associations (like ADB) become a contignous sinking of theirs membership....(do we know something similar "hic & nunc"?..) The rest is history: some artists ended in KZ. Others german creators fled either to USA or to Russia (n.b. Russia: bad choice, read the following threat).

Number 2:- Constructivismus and soviet art. At the begining of the soviet propaganda, under Lenin and Trotzky, it was a time of cultural effervescence, with several free associations, cultural movements (constructivismus, UNOVIS, Malewitch movement, Arvatov and several others, also many, not one singe, n.b.). The destruction of free movements came with Stalin ab 1932. Centralising the creators in creative unions, as workers for the soviet industrial and propaganda machine (Socialist Realism...well-known in Romania ) , the free-thinkers and the nonconformistes were political persecuted. When the Stalinist regime turned against modernists, Malevich was persecuted. He died in poverty in Leningrad, but others in Gulag. This is only a well known case betwen houdred thousend. (o.k. the whole situation is much better described by Orwell in the "Animal Farm")
Number 3:-The Romanian Artists Union (and several similar cases in the soviet block): U.A.P. is the legal follower of the Bucharests Art Syndicate, and of the Mixed Provincial Arts Syndicates, recognised by the law-decret nr.266/1950 (n.b. 1950 period of full stalinistic terror in Romania) In freetext, before the 2-nd war, in the relative democracy of Romania, there was several creative organizations, centralised by force trought UAP (thanks Ana Pauker, good job..).

2 simple and reality-based observations: 1.> after the 1989 eveniments, each major institution in Romania (also the sindicates) was the object of profound restructurations. Not the culturals ones. Why?(we must observe the importance of culture for the political level, in all systems: in dictatures and in democracyes also) 2. The SDPR is a new filiale of UAP. Why not independant? Another really incredible situation: we agree that the communistical and especially the Ceausescu period was a time of dictature. But even in this dictature the design activity outside a central organization was not forbidden by law(!!!). Can be worse as into the dictature? Can be more similar with Germany/Russia 1934, by matching criterias?
Number 4: -The "cultural revolution in China". Policy against art and culture. Central "Art Organisations". Forced apartenence. Comissars that chaise the non-conformists. Policy that chaisse the free creations. Punition as infractionalty. National-specific art politic.

So dear KIT, there we are, in Romania, Christian Calender year 2006. Knowing history, we look at the heuristic similitudes and matchings, and we have to observe concerning and threating situations. Looking at history, we observe the same mechanisms in very different situations and concrete forms, buth with the same portrait; economical interests, politial imixtion in the freedom of creation, propaganda and terror against talent. But also another curious observation: beginning with Nero, frustrated artists are gone into politic, and gaining the power they "punsh" the talented ones, for their talent. Look only at Hitler "the painter". So far the history.