Many psychiatrists and psychologists refuse to entertain the idea that society as a whole may be lacking in sanity. It is naively assumed that the fact that the majority of people share certain ideas or feelings proves the validity of these ideas and feelings. But the fact that millions of people share the same vices does not make these vices virtues, and the fact that millions of people share the same forms of mental pathology does not make these people sane.
— Erich Fromm
Not only the reason of millennia—their insanity, too, breaks out in us.
— Friedrich Nietzsche
Ye turn things upside down.
— Isaiah

What happens when the people of a society are so caught up with and dominated by the technical mechanisms of their culture that they lose the ability to distinguish between means and ends; between trivia and significance; between reality and unreality; ultimately between sanity and madness?

How long can a society live entirely inside of its illusions? 

Spectacle performances begin with ominous soundbites, relevant quotes, and The Fable of the Poison Grain paying tribute to the visionaries who decipher the mystery and madness of a world turned upside down: the artists, activists, and scholars who make The Spectacle project possible.

The Fable of the Poison Grain

 
 

Modern-Day Prophets

Artists are those who deeply experience the present, and transmute those experiences into representations of the world as it truly is. They are the few from the ancient fabled kingdom who receive the unpoisoned grain so that at least some among us will remember that the rest of us are insane. They illuminate the shadowy crevices of reality, in direct opposition to corporate technocrats who filter reality through propaganda and ossify the resulting ideologies into dogma.

We have a great need today for prophets, philosophers, critics and artists to depict reality so that we may come to understand and manage the power that technological civilization has unleashed. From their visions we might fashion a workable philosophy for the Spectacle Age, and plant the seeds of new myths that may someday allow us to transcend it. 

The modern-day prophets who significantly influence this project are featured in The Spectacle Pantheon.

 

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RELATED:

The Spectacle Pantheon

CREDITS:

Erich Fromm, The Sane Society

Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra

The Old Testament, Isaiah 29:16

Video by Eric Goodman

Vocals by Elena Rodgers

Spectacle Prelude composed by Mike Florio

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