By Raffaella Frascarelli
In Avatar, the science fiction movie by James Cameron, after having lost the use of his legs Jake Sully can go back to walking each time he enters his avatar, a body made up of his own DNA hybridized with that of the Na’vi, the inhabitants of planet Pandora. The aesthetic experience of the new body puts Sully in touch with two dimensions previously unknown to him: the inner dimension of the avatar and that of planet Pandora.
Facing the unknown caused by this new imagery, Jake Sully dies to be reborn in a new form of knowledge. A knowledge of a world that allows him to access the meaning of life as cosmos.
Like Sully, contemporary art (and Capitalism, its demiurge) is in front of a choice that can transform it into a new ethical, social, and human dimension. An achievement that requires courage. Veiled by an autocratic anthropology that pushes homo-oeconomicus towards acquisitiveness, art risks reifying the power, while the artist’s creativity seems corrupted by this implacable thirst.
As it often happens in history, the market plays a key role: a public space that must take responsibility for choices on the sense of art as a common good. Will the real revolution be set in the metamorphosis of the market according to cultural perspectives of participation and collective emancipation?
In 1843–2018. A Manifesto for Renewing Liberalism and The Next Capitalist Revolution,The Economist puts in the dock the weakening of the spirit of radicalism, the self-serving attitude of liberal elites, the more powerful and profitable profile of businesses, the danger of cartels as instrumental in the 20th-century totalitarianism. The idea to defend is that of liberalism understood as “a universal commitment to individual dignity, open markets, limited governments and a faith in human progress brought about by debate and reform”, being aware that “political philosophies cannot live by their past glories: they must also promise a better future”. What to bring with you on this new journey? “Criticism, reforms, and new intellectual approaches”.
Here lies the state of the matter. The choice that contemporary art has to do is the same as that of Capitalism: the aesthetic revolution concerns the sense of what is chosen, practiced, defended and promoted. If the market takes responsibility for the contents, it will be immune from the artwork’s fetishism as a commodity: this metamorphosis will project the market into a new ethical dimension of the artwork.
365ArtFair is a platform that intends to experiment with this new approach to art: aware of the cultural responsibility to build a network of galleries whose research is born from the desire of understanding the world according to a perspective of aesthetic solidarity, 365ArtFair is the avatar of a new era in which collecting is for everyone and the collector is able to re-imagine a fair, just, shared social future.
Raffaella Frascarelli ~ Founder and Scientific Director of Nomas Foundation Rome, is a Middle Eastern Studies scholar who got her Ph.D. at EPHE Paris and L’Orientale Naples in 2014. Her research focuses on the transmission and revision of the ancient thought within the modern and post-modern socio-political systems and on the subsequent philosophical, scientific, sociological, historical, and cultural implications. Currently she teaches at the Department of Sociology of Cultural Processes and Sociology of Contemporary Cultures (Department of Sociological and Economic Science, Faculty of Political, Sociological and Communication Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome). She is also doing research at Sociological Aesthetics, a Research’s Unit of the Department of Social Sciences and Economics at Sapienza University of Rome.