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Markov Alexander Petrovich,
Doctor of Pedagogical Sciences,
Doctor of Cultural Studies,
Professor of St. Petersburg Humanitarian
University of Trade Unions.

Postmodern Art in the Ecstasy of Dying…

Abstract. The article presents an analysis of destructive phenomena in modern art professing the principles of postmodern aesthetics: axiological pluralism and stylistic syncretism, irony and parody, rehabilitation of chaos and ugliness, the cult of physicality and the elements of the subconscious. Art within the framework of such an aesthetic paradigm is interpreted as a way of objectification of the irrationally unconscious sphere, an exodus from the real world into "pure absence" (J. Derrida). The product of postmodern creativity becomes a simulacrum, understood as: a dummy, an ersatz of reality; an ironic "copy of the shadow"; a hyperreal object and a sign that has lost its connection with the signified. The key symptoms of the degradation of this art are: primitive accessibility and moral nihilism, the aestheticization of the ugly and the demonstration of "bodily practices", the simulative nature of creativity, which is not able to represent reality, limited to its transformation or distortion. Positioning itself outside of morality, postmodern art leaves the boundaries of culture as a means of spiritual transformation of a person – it becomes a kind of "computer virus of culture", provoking a surge of destructive energies deeply embedded in the psychophysical matrices of mentality. The author expresses the hope that postmodern art is just a temporary "disease of the spirit" of the epoch, and the coming deliverance from it will return to this institution its key functions: to assert human dignity, stimulate his mercy and compassion, awaken conscience and honor, the ability to be ashamed and take responsibility for his vocation and what is happening in the world. The guarantee of the preservation and development of the spiritual vector of civilization, which has always been maintained by the institute of art, is the metaphysical essence of man – his freedom and the ineradicable need to search for the meaning of life.

Keywords. Art, aesthetics, postmodernism, chaos, rhizome, simulacrum, art practices, performance.

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Scientific Association of Culture Researchers

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