A Talk with Mat Callahan
Invited to contribute a chapter to the forthcoming book: Imagine! A Socialist USA, (Harper-Collins 2013), Mat Callahan wrote "Imagining Art After Capitalism."
Mat raises the provocative questions: "What will art and art-making become once capitalism is a thing of the past? The end of corporate tyranny will be the end of the music, film, publishing and telecommunications industries as well as the Ford, Rockefeller, Mellon and other foundations, which combine to dominate art production, distribution and consumption today. Emancipated from the rigid hierarchies and mental slavery these institutions have imposed, art and art-making will enjoy a renaissance. Not only will there be an abundance of works celebrating a new world being born but there will be unprecedented creative expression inspiring new conceptions of what art and art-making consist of. This will surely lead to novel forms and practices it is difficult now to predict. But it is possible to trace certain outlines and imagine some of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. In any case, it won't be Disneyland."
The talk presents a summary of these challenges and opportunities, inviting all to participate in the discussion that follows.
ABOUT MAT CALLAHAN
Mat is a musician and author from San Francisco, now residing in Bern, Switzerland. He composed and performed music with seminal world-beat band, The Looters, whose success led to the founding of the artists' collective Komotion International. For 11 years Komotion was a center of radical art making and revolutionary politics in San Francisco. Komotion's performance space, art gallery and sound magazine brought together artists and activists from around the world. Presently, Callahan is organizing the revival of James Connolly's "Songs of Freedom". He is the author of three books, Sex, Death and the Angry Young Man, Testimony, and The Trouble With Music. He can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org or matcallahan.com.