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Jun 14, 2011

Will the Real Humans Please Stand Up?

"Leo Sketch" collage; monotype, silver & water color.
Last night Henry Kissinger appeared on Steven Colbert to pitch his book "On China". He's an international expert who obviously has huge influence. Yet watch this: he says that whereas you and I would agree that the unification of China was not worth the deaths of tens of millions of citizens, only a "split" percentage of Chinese would agree. In that single sweeping statement he's turned the Chinese into monsters. (While you and I obviously are respectful of human life, some Chinese applaud the slaughter of millions of their peers!) How the hell does he know?  How can anyone know for sure? And who in the world has the authority to disagree with him?

I remember hearing from supporters of the Vietnam war that the Vietnamese would send little kids with explosive belts to greet groups of US soldiers because they didn't value human life the way we do (THEY are monsters!) I have no way of knowing what did or did not happen. But I do know for sure that while suicide bombers violate the laws of "civilized" warfare, the suggestion that any people have a disregard for life– especially that of their children!– violates the laws of the whole blasted universe.

This is where the model of the Democratic Globe would be extremely valuable in preventing such caviler generalizations by any power that pretends to speak with special knowledge. Let the people speak for themselves. Then we'll clearly see who is monstrous.
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Tim Holmes Studio

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I'm a sculptor/filmmaker living in Montana, USA. I am using art to move the evolution of humanity forward into an increasingly responsive, inclusive and interactive culture. As globalization flattens peoples into a capitalist monoculture I hope to use my art to celebrate historical cultural differences and imagine how we can co-create a rich future together.

I see myself as an artist/philosopher laboring deep in the mines of joy. I've had a good long career of exhibiting work around the world and working on international outreach projects, most notably being the first American to be invited to present a one-person exhibit in the Hermitage Museum. Recently I have turned my attention from simply making metal sculpture to creating films and workshops for engaging communities directly, tinkering with the very ideas and mechanisms behind cultural transformation. I feel that as we face tragic world crises, if the human species favors our imaginative and creative capacities we can cultivate a rich world to enjoy.

For me the deepest satisfaction in making art comes in engaging people's real life concerns rather than providing simple entertainment or decoration. Areas of conflict or tension are particularly ripe for the kind of transformative power that art uniquely carries. I invite any kind of challenge that serves people on a deep level.