So, the other day I took to watching a parody video of ‘Anaconda’ by Nicki Minaj. I won’t go into too much detail but it involves a lot of butts and a lot of superbly-timed comic fart noises. If you’re that curious, here it is.
While this was a fantastic way to spend around three minutes of my precious time, I couldn’t help but think about how ridiculous not only the parody was, but also the source material, which was released late summer 2014.
You know the lyrics. “My Anaconda don’t want none unless you got buns hun.”
But seriously – was this song written with any creative intention whatsoever? Am I missing a hidden sociopolitical message?
I get that most of pop music nowadays involves half-naked men and women gyrating to synthesized pop beats. The beats are made on a computer and have no human touch whatsoever. Okay – I generally respect EDM artists and directors of music videos and actors – but surely there’s no legitimate intention to really create a masterful, thought-provoking piece of artwork when you’ve got butts, a half-arsed (no pun intended) ‘copy-and-paste’ soundtrack and lyrics and product placement everywhere.
I also get that the video is censored in some areas and in some cases not shown, and I would argue that any piece of artwork, when shown, needs to be shown in full.
(Give me dem titties lol m9).
Feeling and expression need to be felt by artist and ‘consumer’.
But there needs to be some responsibility, somehow, with the availability of said art. What I mean by this is that obviously it would not be acceptable to show butts on TV during the day -even though ‘Anaconda’ is given ample airtime. Children need to be protected from gyrating dance moves and shoddy innuendo-laced lyrics.
Now to consider a couple of examples of some controversial performances which were given airplay.
So first we had Anaconda.
Secondly, Miley Cyrus’ performance at the VMA’S IN 2013.
Jennifer Lopez ft. Iggy Azalea – Booty is basically porn.
But for a moment, let’s just assume that these examples are in fact pieces of ‘artwork’. What do they all have in common? They’re part of pop culture.
Is this exuberance, loutishness soft-core porn REALLY ‘popular’? Or is it being forced upon us?
I bet that most people, when asked, don’t really like the top-40, it’s just that we’ve been spoon-fed this crap our whole lives and have just become used to it. They can get away with labelling it ‘pop’ and selling it on our screens.
This next point might be akin to something Karl Pilkington might say, but another example of what I’m talking about is statues of naked men and women.
Long ago they made the Greek statues with phalluses – phalli? – was this unacceptable? Or did people just walk around with their dicks out, tits out, so the statues they made were not ‘taboo’? They were just pure pieces of art.
But – fast forward to the 21st century – we don’t go around with our bums out for all to see. Sure, cleavage and legs are more revealed than they were 50 years ago. But I’m just curious as to what the justification for ‘Anaconda’ is. Normal humans don’t walk around and dry-hump street lamps randomly. So why are the dancers in her video dry-humping a bridge?
Okay. Art is about evoking feelings. Anaconda might provoke some ‘lads’ to go ‘phwoar!’ or reinforce the usual male gaze, in some sections of society.
But… do people appreciate ‘Anaconda’ the same way people appreciate, say, Mozart? Apparently not. So what do they appreciate?
Let’s go to some extreme examples of ‘artwork’ that have appeared in recent years. ‘Torture Porn’ such as Saw and The Human Centipede – what the hell are they? Why were they made? I haven’t seen The Human Centipede but have been told that it’s ‘fucking disgusting’. That’s a feeling, isn’t it? Some people get a weird kick out of watching that shit.
So, artwork now evokes disgust, or even hatred.
Art is, of course, about evoking feelings.
By the way – isn’t this exactly what 50 Shades of Grey did to middle-aged women?
By my own definition of art as evoking feelings, 50 Shades of Grey and The Human Centipede are works of art?
Not sure what I’ve uncovered or even touched upon here but I don’t really consider The Human Centipede or ‘Anaconda’ to be works of art.
I consider any expression of emotion as artwork. Money-grabbing pop, click-bait attention seeking articles and torture-porn seat-fillers are not pieces of artwork.IMHO.
What do you think?