Utopia | Shelley Kendall

A Utopian society is both admirable and unattainable. People strive towards a utopian civilization every day in their attempts to better society, yet actually achieving one would paradoxically result in turmoil. Artists that work in a utopian manner, I believe, are very aware that the exact success of what they are working towards, would never be something they wanted to happen.

Throughout reading these articles on utopia, I could not help but think about the first utopian/distopian novel I’ve ever read, when I was about 12 or 13 years old, called The Last Book In The Universe.

This book was one of the most spooky and memorable things I’ve read as a child. I haven’t looked at or read it since, but I do remember it as my first “awakening” to the power and also flaws of the human condition.

The last book in the universe_med1

In regards to Hirschhorn, here is a quote from the art21 piece.

“What you are doing for the community-” – Community Member

“No, I do not do something for the community. I do something, I hope for, art. The understanding of art.” – Hirschhorn

I find it peculiar and entertaining that none of the community members seem to understand Hirschhorn’s purpose for building the monument, yet it is benefitting them regardless, and they are grateful.

“Thomas is not white, he’s not European, he’s black.”

A very powerful statement by a black community member, that I’m not sure even Thomas Hirschhorn himself would agree with.



Missing Blog Posts:

Lisa Robertson’s Shack:

“Is architecture a monument to the failure of pastoral utopia.”

This was my favorite line from the reading in which Robertson describes the fleeting and ephemeral feelings that nature give us. Even when we, as humans, have settled down within architecture, there is often still this primal need to eventually “move on” in search of something better. In my opinion, the idea of “settling” goes against our very nature as human beings, and is a modern construct put in place that many have adapted to, yet more reject.

I think of my parents, who have lived in the same house since the year I was born. They never had much inclination to move, or even travel, especially after the recession in 2008. I wonder how much of this “settling” is truly in their nature, as some people are surely more “settling” then others. But I also wonder, if given the chance, they would have explored or bettered their situation. I think the biggest social contruct that came into play was money- they couldnt (or at least believed they couldn’t) “better” their situation by moving onto something new.


Guattari’s points on ecology and the new ecosocial approaches that must be implemented to, in a sense, save our world, remind me of a lot of the vegan/environmentally active bloggers I follow and have come across in my time. They seem to highlight some of his ideas in a more relatable manner, at least for people like me and/or younger generations.






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