Thursday, August 10, 2006

Monday, August 07, 2006

posted by Norman at 10:01 AM 0 comments
Saturday, August 05, 2006

There are premises that are alluded to but never quite spelled out in the discourses I've been reading in the Blogs about 'Art' and 'Pornography.' What Art is and cannot be if it is Pornographic. I am pleased to read the bloggers who do their homework, cite and quote in scholarly fashion the writings of philosophers on art, art historians and those who make an art of creating a literature that teaches us to appreciate great artists and the attributes of Great Art. I come by my examination of the metaphysics as to their meanings from another direction. I've spent countless hours making drawings, prints and drawings. I've been an easel painter too. The name given to the direction I took, the process I experienced has come to be called 'facture'.

As I've come to learn 'facture' this recently coined word, I recognize what is being alluded to. But its meaning to me has no translation to those who never made paintings and drawings and prints. It alludes to a process, a REINVENTING OF THE WHEEL. In my case a learning process in which I endeavored to teach myself drawing, painting, and beget a rather custom tailored image-picture that I and I alone could do. That which is made is more than verbal approximation or definition in a dictionary or library reference book. Nor can any literary analogies serve as equivalences or translations.

I DID 'facture' (before ever hearing the word. I knew from my own experiences its attributes, Mathematicians have a word for it, call it 'heuristic.' John Dewey alluded to it too: learning-by-finding-out. I aspired to making Art. And when I made my drawings pornographical, I was in my twenties. I also aspired to making art and teaching it, I devoted my wage earning hours to teaching my students 'how to learn how to learn.'

They did not know which Who I was -that lone WHO who loved the arts and hoped to do Art was making images I knew to be IMPERMISSIBLE. But was this Porn-I-made-become-Art, and this Art-in-its-turn-making-this-Who, (me) writing and avering there BEING such a thing as Art that is pornographic and that the Pornography can be transcendental (the denigrated genre CAN magically become ART)!


And something more too: MY ART MADE ME.
I metamorphosed. Magoo-like, I was this sleepwalker, this Dantesque Visual Poet (as though led by a Muse) made ART. An unWho whose ever present erection signaled to him the 'authenticity' of his home-made porn! He read them, read them as though the drawings were gypsy ciphers,tea leaves at the bottom of her cup: containing 'Secrets' - Freudian, mysterious, archetypes not stereotypes - elusive, nonverbal yet tactile and its meanings hidden in plain sight!

In all the teacups there contained sacred prohibitions, impermissible, taboos, secrets as to...? What / Something. Maybe autobiographical. Elusive, metaphysical! Maybe even cosmic. Important were the repetitive motifs. (see some of it on my web site: Someway, somehow, I believed there would come more than mere erections and the little deaths. Better were it 'Golden Traces', EUREKAs!...

I sought..., but of more relevance, I FOUND!

I'll be posting blogs about making art, obscenity, sexuality, to be censured, censored. I will attempt to fill in more as to 'Premises' and the how's and Who determining, having The Authority to presume to say WHAT IS and isn't ART and WHAT IS and isn't PORNOGRAPHY and WHAT IT does SAY OF US and does not say. I hope to talk about The WHO's WE THINK WE ARE and MAY BECOME.

Diverse and assorted metalinguistics and stances. I hope this will be a salon, a meeting place as to these issues....
posted by Norman at 2:10 PM 4 comments
About Me

Norman Shapiro
New York, New York, United States
I'm 77, one eyed, celebrating my 50th wedding anniversary. My wife is my best friend and my greatest fan, I almost went blind totally this year. survived the threat (a detatched retina) and see as good or better with new Rx glasses. No diminishment of my artistiic productivity. I'm reminded of my fragility every day. Life is still full of GOOD surprises too. I've gotten to a now this far that is rich and worth the efforts I make to 'keep on truckin' -much further than I ever expected to. No bliss, no boredome, no abyss. Too much going on.
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Ufemisms Book Art
Metro Mike
Sex in Art
Idaho Center For The Book
San Francisco Center For the Book
Is-it-art-or-pornography-age-old Question
A Brush With Art
Lazy Geisha
Delta Of Venus
Previous Posts

There are premises that are alluded to but never q...

August 2006

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Sex Without Love, Love Without Sex

It seems to me that there’s a lot of that: sex without love, love without sex

Not here in Manhattan, not just in the U. S. of A. It’s a guess. I’ve not done any research, can’t say I’ve looked it up statistically, found authoritative documents and all that. It’s a gut feeling. It could be a hair brain notion like phlogiston, or the hypothetical ether in outer space which was proven didn’t exist. But sex without love is out there, and love without sex also.

It all has to do with ‘pornography’ and it being a billion dollar industry. They’re out there, these people making it -raking in all kinds of people to buy it, those triple x DVDs and magazines and books, those movies, made in every which preference so as to meet the need out there, triggering lust, exciting the genitals and stirring the hormonal juices. They make all manner of 'Porn' to meet their public's needs. And they sure have lots of customers! Young (under and overage) elderly, old, straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, black, white, yellow, married, single, and whatever have you.

Called hardcore or soft, it is hardly ever about 'Love'. (Or even romance. Not that I can recall coming across it.) It is about stereophysical and stereotypical sex bouts, strenuous sessions of 'HAVING' SEX, and how 'FUN' and 'RECREATIONAL' it is to watch, or how enervating, machismo, and brutish, etc.

To say the least: it is not about long-term relationships. What it is about is 'getting it off', 'getting it on' doing it with great gusto and bodies -and masterclass sexy partners. It IS about SEXY SEX and not about BABIES .... and not about PROPAGATING THE SPECIES, or having a (Darwinian) posterity. Most definitely, in my own experience at least, it is about the nitty gritty of lust (not anything one wants generalized, abstracted, inferred, or done off-screen), it is to be witnessed (voyeured) in the NOW, and IN YOUR FACE. It is what the paying customers crave.

Love (with a capital L) is not the issue, it is not required or needed. Maybe there was or will be a weird pornographer putting it in as a kind of frill.

So what does that say about it? About us? I dunno.

What also strikes me and I'm saying is there’s this symmetry, this “Love Without Sex” aspect to it. One can fold the line and see a mirror symmetry to it; Yin and Yang.

I know people. They're out there who know love, but not getting much of any kind of sex at all. My guess is that their sex isn’t near XXX at all. I can't even picture it when I look at them, -childless, beyond their middles age, unattractive, showing not the slightest interest in anything sexual. It is not discussed. They never bought a XXX DVD or video, or browsed the internet for XXX jpegs, pdfs, gifs, etc. You know what I mean.

And I’m asking: what does that say of them, of opinionated us looking askance at them? Maybe I’m talking out of turn, and the emperor ISN'T NAKED! There’s something about this we’re not allowed to discuss. No discourse here.

Some of you might say I’m making a big deal out of nothing, building a house of cards here. I’m surely not being scientific. 'Sheer speculation!' 'There’s nothing really wrong out there." Or at least, so far, I ain’t telling you EXACTLY what it is. Truth is, I’m trying to figure it out myself.


I’ve got my own experiences, got my first hand ones about Love and sex. Somehow, I've compartmentalized the two. I'm Married. I met and fell in love with my wife when I was teaching in Baltimore. We married. Love, love. We managed to conceive a child after a lot of difficulties and seeing pediatricians. Annette had to undergo a hysterectomy when my daughter was born. I’m now 77, celebrating our 50th anniversary. We hug, kiss, and cuddle a lot. We say (sincerely) how grateful and lucky we are to have each other, be there for each other, and still be dating. We're appreciative.

But we’re not having sex.

Not for a hell of a long time. (I won’t go into all the details as to why. That’s neither here nor there and it's personal.) But my guess is that we are not the only couple, we're not unique. I’m willing to stick my neck out and venture to say there are zillions out there who for all kinds of reasons have had little or no experience with love and sex. (None sustainable.)

It occurs to me there are people who are lonely, unhappy, sad about being 'alone'. Maybe they find ways of getting it (sex). And then, they may not. We could believe it’s easier to get sex than love. Luck of the draw. But, then again, I know persons who are content to be loners, say they’re mighty glad for things being the way they are! Love carries all kinds of responsibilities and burdens.

Many hunger for 'a kind of sex'. Love plays no part in it. Sex is 'fun' and recreational: a game, a sport, a parlor game, a fantasy, another Identity - other than the one most know him (or her) by. Its what a man won't do with his wife but only with other what does that say of him and them? What does that say? I’m asking.

I’m not sure yet as to where I’m going with this.


It seems a paradox: 'love without sex' juxtaposing with 'sex without love'.
Maybe or maybe not.
Suppose, hey, some say it's wrong!
'Something is wrong here! This shouldn’t be!'
'Not Christian!'
'Not Kosher!', (etc., you get my meaning.)
'Improper, even impermissible.'
'A damn shame!'

We do feel. Shame. Anger. Regret. Loss.
We get angry, and profoundly put out. It can be depressing.
We’ve been taught from our earliest childhood we were meant for so much more, we deserve so much better.
So have I been taught to suppose.

Is this all ‘inborn’? In our genetic makeup?
Our culture?
Who can say. Or not say there is an either / or. I shrug.

To be Continued. (Maybe)