When I was in highschool, I would have been totally content with living my adult life on a minimum wage salary, as long as I could still be doing what I wanted to do creatively (at the time it would have been making beats on fl studio and subsequent cover graphics on photoshop) with a roof over my head and food in the fridge. However, after I moved out and started living on my own, the bohemian naiveté of my youth started to crack as I slowly became anxious of the stagnancy within the local creative market, especially on digital fronts, which was moving at a much slower pace than what me and my peers had access to online. A new type of opportunity presented itself. For the first time, there was a shared goal of purpose and prosperity. 

Tibor Kalman says that “mass media, architecture, design and art exist for the sole purpose of creating wealth.” While that’s a bold claim, the underlying message here speaks to the fragile dichotomy between culture and wealth while nodding to a chicken-and-egg type analogy. Does culture first come from wealth, or does wealth first come from culture? Seeing as how one is quantitative and the other is qualitative, one assumption could be that the qualitative (culture) is abstracting from the quantiative (wealth).

If this is the case, it means that wealth is created first, and then culture derives from that creation. This could be confusing because often times, wealth is associated with cultural signifiers that are implicit of elegance, grace, and esteem. On the other hand, the acquisition of wealth frequently highlights the most unbecoming aspects of the human condition. 


Gregory Bateson was an anthropologist who used this diagram to illustrate the inheret cycle of global and societal disasters. As we go through each of the inner circles, it shows one phase feeding in to the next. The egotism of hubris drives the acceleration of technology; the benefits of which promote the population; creating an improved state, susceptible to changing back into hubris. The outer circles represent consequences for each state’s instability.

Conversely, Bateson believed that a healthy balanced state should sound something like this:


A single system of environment combined with high human civilization in which the flexibility of the civilization shall match that of the environment to create an ongoing complex system, open-ended for slow change of even basic (hard-programmed) characteristics.
According to Bateson, our ideal state of society is a hyper aware, dynamic relationship between civilization and environment. This constant fluctuation affects the structure on all levels, including the most base ideologies. 

LAST LOGGED 01/21/18