The NY Times has an article up on the wonderful blossoming of creativity amongst Afghan women, which includes a great deal of modern “art,” which to me is anything but. Why it is considered progress when women are encouraged to produce these monstrosities is beyond me. If there is anything the West should not be exporting, it is our contemporary art, which seems designed only to bother and provoke people.
So Afghanistan does indeed have a rich artistic heritage, despite the cultural barbarism and depravity of the Taliban, and plenty of tradition to draw on. However, rather than encourage Afghans to contribute something of value, the NY Times features pictures of sculptures that, in some cases, look like something one is supposed to flush down the toilet. It’s almost as though they are hell bent on proving the Taliban correct in their assertion that art is godless garbage that corrupts the soul and pollutes the landscape.
Perhaps the beautiful people in the NY art world think that because it is being produced by “liberated” Afghan women, it must have intrinsic value. Well, they do pay large sums of money for what most everyone knows is junk here at home, but I suspect those who do so don’t really have beauty and artistic excellence in mind so much as they enjoy using their wealth to stick a thumb in the eye of the snobby old money types they hate. In Afghanistan, however, there’s simply no excuse. What purpose could it serve, besides another form of torture, to expose the people of that miserable, war-torn country to these displays?