Eutopia Essay- For Exhibition in CCRN Luxembourg

In 1516 Sir Thomas More conceived Utopia as a fictional island
in the Atlantic Ocean constructed as an ideal society. The name, from Greek
origin, means no-place. Eutopia on the other hand, originally means a
good-place. It is speculated that More was aware of the double entendre.
The word utopia has come to mean the search for ideal
communities,
whether economically, religiously, in government, or ecologically.
Eutopia is a place where people live in plenty, in health, in peace,
in prosperity with freedom and opportunity. Eutopia is an imaginary. The
word Eutopia is a far goal and a mirage, but one that beckons. The utopian
impulse is where we look to the future, and place ourselves in relation to what
could be.
Eutopia was organized by Cultureinside.com, an
international group of artists based in Luxembourg and New York . Our mission
is to create sustainable artist communities on the web and the world. We
support exhibitions, artist initiatives, commerce, discussions and
interventions as part of our artist activity
We have mounted “Eutopia” in cooperation with Le Centre
Culturel de
Recontre Abbaye de Neumunster, which has generously provided space and
support for our exhibition.
In recent years it has been passé to speak
about the future. In
literature and film, dystopian stories abound. . The future is viewed
darkly. The world is seen bound toward ruin and destruction.
Modernism and the age of ideology seared us with totalitarianism,
mind control, war and dreams unfulfilled; we now hesitate to look forward to
any future. We have turned around to look at and mine the past instead. In
an article in the Boston Post, Joshua Glenn writes about cultural critics
Fredric Jameson and Russell Jacoby, who have written independently
about the lost utopian spirit
“ The question, for thinkers like these, is how to revive
the spirit
of utopia - the current enfeeblement of which, Jameson claims,
''saps our political options and tends to leave us all in the helpless
position of passive accomplices and impotent hand-wringers" - without
repeating the errors of what Jacoby has dubbed ''blueprint
utopianism," that is, a tendency to map out utopian society in minute
detail. How to avoid, as Jameson puts it, effectively ''colonizing the
future.” (2005)
The meaning of “Eutopia” was refracted by us in several
ways as we
named the exhibition. The first meaning is an acknowledgment of the
European experiment, which compared to the past, in it's barest
outline, is moving closer to the Utopian dream. Europe has accomplished
so


much in the last 25 years in initiating and implementing changes that protect individuals,
provide freedoms, opportunity, a social safety net, and open national
and economic barriers. We noticed a secondary meaning of “Eutopia.” We
are an
online group. Notice the first letter E, in the beginning of the word
“Eutopia”.
E- can show our connections to the Internet (as in E-Bay). The Internet, still
in its
infancy, is connecting people throughout the world, providing information,
education and


cultural space. Although, there are negative alliances and groups on the web, we believe


the Internet is generally an extremely positive development, particularly in the world of art.


" Cultural space is political space. “ (2001)
In regard to political space, we joined the dialog marking
the current
European Year of Poverty and Social Exclusion. It is important to cast
our search for the future with a critical eye in the present. People
have been left behind in the social contract. We construct a space between what
is and


what can be, in imaginal and pictorial form. It is important for artists to illustrate, define,


expose, and express the realities they see around them. Artists have the ability, and we


believe the necessity to make their art relevant to aesthetic, philosophic, or political issues


of the day. If it is not relevant today, will it be relevant in the future?

References
Glenn, J., Boston Globe, 11/20/2005 found at
http://www.boston.com/news/globe/ideas/articles/2005/11/20/back_to_...
Ferrell, J. (2001). Tearing down the streets: Adventures in urban
anarchy. New York, NY: Palgr


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