Bloody Laundry (The Sexiest Capitalism Ever)
The installation explores the relationship between contemporary capitalism, ethics and pornification of society, questioning the common prejudice that earning, winning and the economic growth are made hygienically, without blood and victims. The work reflects on the conception of human being, under contemporary market-based regime. It is not only that developed capitalism strengthens the mother/whore dichotomy, but it also invites woman to sanctify capitalism and aestheticize economy, to act as a marketing fetish or ideal consumer, to wash the dirty laundry to make business look beautiful, seductive and entertaining.
Connotations of bloody laundry: Global inequality, in which western pleasures are produced by eastern, under-waged labour. Moral hand-washing, in which neoliberal liturgies of growth, profit and win-win are used to blinding of reality. Supressing basic human rights, substituting ethics by market-based thinking. Double standards, in which pornification and moralism are both means to sell more. Market-based censorship as a new form of blasphemy.
Some years ago in China, I happened to hear a true story. A family from Chinese countryside wanted to give an English name, the most beautiful name, for their newborn daughter. The baby was baptised ”Pornstar”. - The anecdote does not tell only of global powers of media and entertainment industry, but also, how the whole globe begins to share the same value atmosphere, where business, celebrity culture and porn begin to substitute earlier religion-based ethical standards, local habits and beliefs.
Another quotation from reality. “The beauty of me is that I’m very rich,” tells Donald Trump. Trump is the first US president to have appeared in a porn video. According to an article in The Guardian, internet porn caused the rise of Trump. - The installation studies this contemporary success-based, pornified ethos of capitalism, and what it has made to ethics. Working for capitalism is understood as simple competence and expertise, as a bloodless, hygiene and skillful action, without any victims. The many layers of global inequality, and also setbacks in gender roles, tell another tale.
One backround factor of the work is also the new kind of censorship, in which market-based values define what sort of speech is free and what not. A group of right-wing Finnish leaders (the black angels in the wall border, in the big oval painting, and neckties) attacked to silence an artwork that had questioned the ethics of internet teen porn market. Banning ethical questions and market-critical art is a holy task, demanded by business profit.
The installation is the latest part of Donna Criminale project. This project, including eg. a hanged toiletpaper madonna and a book, has been exhibited in many countries.
The themes of the installation - consumer society, trans-aestheticization, artistic capitalism, pornification, market-based ethics - have also been dealt in many theoretical lectures, held in international conferences (eg. ”The Sexiest Capitalism Ever: A Duckface Selfie of A Trans-Aestheticized Market Economy”, ESA Athens 2017; ”The Aesthetics of Seduction: When Economy Goes Aesthetic But Not Always So Beautiful”, International Congress of Aesthetics, Seoul 2016; ”The Aesthetics of Seduction: The Capitalist Market as the Body of Desire”, ESA Prague 2015, ”Contemporary Capitalism as an Economics of Seduction: Ethics and Justice Defined by an Aesthetic Principle of Pleasure”, World Congress of Sociology, Yokohama 2014)
More images from the installation on my website: https://ullakarttunen.wordpress.com/bloody-laundry/