Our internal aesthetic editor

What ought to be?

That is the International Arts Movement‘s way of asking a question that has partly driven my artistic philosophy for ten years now. I was never able to put it in such succinct terms, however. I usually talked about original creation, what the world looked and acted like before the Fall. IAM’s more concise phrase is a much better jumping off point.

A few months ago I was thinking about photography, a media we all love as long as we’re the ones behind the lens, a technology that seems to capture every wrong moment in time if the lens is pointed towards us. Recently I’ve been working more and more with video. Interlaced in all of the footage lie a myriad of embarrassing gestures. Without this technology though, most of us never see the contorted nature of our countenance midstream. Before the advent of the camera, we were more in control of our image.

Is there something about our dislike of seeing ourselves, especially when we don’t look our best, that relates back to the way things ought to be? Do we possess some kind of internal aesthetic editor that is still faintly yet immutably calibrated to a world before the Fall?


Image by Derek Jensen from Wikipedia.


About pcNielsen
Paul Nielsen founded The Aesthetic Elevator late in 2005. He owns a piece of paper, located somewhere in his house (not on the wall), stating that he earned a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska around about 2001. While there, he studied studied architecture, graphic design and ceramics, graduating with a degree in studio art. Paul presently serves as communications manager for a small non-profit doing their print design and marketing. He spends as much time sculpting in his studio as possible — which is not nearly enough. Visit his website at pcNielsen.com.

3 Responses to Our internal aesthetic editor

  1. sojournwanderer says:

    What ought to be? Wow… there’s a profound question.

    I can relate, though, to the comment at the end. There are so few photos of me that I like… there are so few that match my mental self-image. Don’t know why, but so it is.

    (Postscript… I’m back; the blog’s moved to design-realized.com/wordpress …and I put up a gallery of new exciting photos. 🙂 )

    • pcNielsen says:

      Ooh, me likey the gallery. Still loving your fat people cups. Similar to an idea I have for cups that look cloud-like, if I ever get back into functional wares. I actually did throw a couple yesterday, more successfully than I’d have imagined. Not great though.

      And glad you’re back!

  2. Julie says:

    I’m glad you like the gallery; it was surprisingly easy to set up! (Want come cups? There are some glossy lowfire ones someplace…) The shooting was the tougher part of the project.

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