Sunday, March 20, 2011

Odd Futurism

Yes. And yes.

A nice (perhaps the best) exploration of the Odd Future phenomenon yet. Bethlehem Shoals in Poetry Magazine comparing Tyler, the Creator et. al. to F.T. Marinetti and the Italian Futurists.

Link here.

At the same time, the sophistication that informs much of OFWGKTA’s output clearly marks them as children of a particular Los Angeles scene. They are, at once, wacky skaters whose antics are solidly in the Big Brother/Jackass tradition, and aesthetic terrorists who know that filth isn’t just fun—it’s also, when employed in the most dispassionate, pastiche-driven way imaginable, its own kind of creative mischief-making. OFWGKTA isn’t looking to shock audiences—they’re out to show off their own desensitization. That explains their seeming indifference to context, or connotation. If you’re second-guessing the level of irony this requires, watch any of the skate videos in which the crew exults over a remarkably ordinary move. This use of language, and visual signs, is both provocatively naive and knowingly subversive. What makes them endlessly fascinating, at once visionary and always somewhat scrambled, is OFWGKTA’s desire to have it both ways.