The Liberation of Underground Art – Part 2
The liberation of underground art is well underway due to the accessibility of this genre of art on the internet. Previously, underground art as its name suggests was successful as it was underground and hard to find. Fans of this genre of art loved the fact that it was art they seemed to be made especially for them and not a general audience.
And by opening up underground art in the public domain is underground art selling out? And can underground art be called underground if anybody can see it? These are the dilemmas that underground artists face in this wonderful world of the internet. After all radical art movements have always pushed the democratization of culture, and one of the main points about such art was that the audience could make an informed decision of what is acceptable and right.
Underground art has always been a genre of art that has been challenging in every shape and form, and the artists made no bones of trying to smooth out any rough edges. Fans were drawn to this edgy style of art because it was so raw, audiences wanted to be challenged in their thinking.
The Arts Council of England once proclaimed that they were there to offer great art to the masses, and in some ways they have achieved this. But radical underground art and edgy performance arts never really fell into this umbrella, and it was cool to make and watch such art.
But the premise of great art for everybody does not mean that everybody has to see everything. So if you don’t want to see more mainstream art funded by the government then you do not have to, there are credible alternatives.
Social Media / The Internet
Many underground artists have used the internet and in particular social media to get their work noticed, but most of the general public agree that whatever alternative cultures are available in the public domain that they should adhere to a moral framework.
These audiences feel that they have a right to enter places and spaces that perhaps they should not be looking and have the protection of censorship and the right to close the site. This is a very dangerous premise, everybody heeded their father’s advice not to put their hands in the fire, but all of a sudden the idea is accepted that they have a right to burn their hands if they want to.
Underground art has to have a niche if it is to remain underground, otherwise it will become watered down and a paler version of its former self. Underground artists must be able to continue to ply their art in any way they feel fit, and out of the jurisdiction of public morality.
If this means that underground art returns to back-street live venues and discards social media and the internet, then so be it. The liberation of underground art should be in the hands of the artists themselves, and not some meddling conservative who inadvertently clicked on the wrong site.