Political Artworks

“Otis” Kanye West, Jay-Z

In class, we talked about the extent to which art can incorporate political elements and still be considered art. Hiphop is an entire genre of music, or art, that can be purely political yet well received, especially by young audiences.

Perhaps the reason the young generation often react to these “political artworks” is because thy are able to sympathize with the themes woven into the beat. Jay-Z’s reflections are based on his own experiences growing up in Brooklyn, much like Marjane Satrapi’s illustartions of her childhood inĀ Persepolis. Whatever kinds of neighborhood or reformation, good or bad, are still fragments of their own society, and the illustrating characters growing up in those environments are a political statement.

The medium of these statements, in this case art, allows for a connection to be established between the artist and the audience as well. I cannot recall the exact source, but I once heard of this definition for art:

“Art: A focused work/process that holds a purposeful intention by the artist to elicit a tangible feeling influenced by the artist; this transcends from the superficial point of view, to the abyss of human emotion.”

Art is like a cloud of ambiguity that rains emotions onto the human mind. It is often difficult to compose the exact words to describe one’s reaction to a piece of panting or music. However, the young generation who dwell in the cities re often caught under their own cloud of ambiguity anyway. In a place where your senses are overfed with colors, sirens, and street lights, anything other than a properly constructed sentence channels smoothly into their minds.

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