For the first time in history, artists would be fully free to express themselves, instead of limiting their work to things that will make their patron, or consumers, happy. Activities at the caves of Tun-huang are another example of the interest in traditional art displayed by the Communist Government. Tunhuang is an oasis near the western border of China Proper, on the old silk route into Central Asia. Near it there was created, following the penetration of Buddhism into China, an agglomeration of cave temples containing religious statues and elaborately painted walls. The place was never entirely abandoned, but it was much neglected, and in the early years of this century, English, French, and Japanese explorers, getting wind of a cache of scrolls and manuscripts at Tun-huang, carried away everything portable.

technique sail

  • Because under communism their art would not be able to create value the camera would not be a mean of production.
  • This technique enabled the great landscape painters of the Sung period to translate intellectual concepts directly into pictorial symbols with concentrated power and brilliance.
  • The wood-block group, always largely Communist in sympathy, was adopted by the regime with little difficulty.
  • Art is fundamental to human society, art is when we humans concioussly shape and understand nature, we think creatively based on the world around us.
  • Patriarchal, white supremacist, cissexist, heterosexist, or otherwise oppressive speech is unacceptable.

You no longer have to worry about producing art for a boss or company if you don’t want to. And without the profit incentive you can photograph whatever you want without worrying about following media trends. Explore The Atlantic’s complete archive, and enjoy unlimited access to select content for a limited time. This magazine has been fully digitized as a part of The Atlantic’s archive. Each article originally printed in this magazine is available here, complete and unedited from the historical print. Read more from this magazine, or explore the full archive.

How Would Art And Music Exist Under Communism

Because under communism their art would not be able to create value the camera would not be a mean of production. You would have to work no matter what in a communist society. All in all, the Chinese Communists must be credited with making shrewd use of most of the artists at their disposal, with improving the status of sculpture, and with a conscientious effort to preserve the great artistic heritage of their country.

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In Nanking, Hsü Pei-hung, a very able painter of similar background, dominated a coterie which concentrated on technical proficiency. Thanks to the efforts of these men and others like them, painting in the European manner had become fairly familiar in China by the end of the thirties. But the creative process and progress of art, like the development of the productive forces requires certain conditions, which are ultimately material conditions. Under capitalism, art becomes reduced to a rigid and commercialized form because the anarchic market dictates what is art, and what art can be sold on the market for profit.

The music industry is an example of capitalism at its most parasitic. Music has value like any other product, it is obviously socially necessary and sold on the market for gigantic profit, but artists are often forced to PAY the distributors for their labour. It is virtually impossible to make a living making music. Meanwhile, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek would rather invest in military tech startups than pay his artists. Many leftists instead want everyone to focus on support services like patreon or bandcamp to help artists, fine, but that leads to nothing and makes us give up on the basis of the problem. Communists first step in this question should be to fight for the nationalization of all streaming services and the abolishment of intellectual property as a step toward the whole music industry.

Even today, on the streets of Hanoi, you can see these famous propaganda art posters all over the country. The idea of individual freedom is not compatible with Communist thinking and ideology. Under Communism, the reason to have freedom of speech and personal freedoms would be to bring forth the communist ideals and ideology. One of the critical aspects of Communism is the aspect of freedom of speech.

Artists who express orthodox Communist ideas with reasonable enthusiasm are rewarded with prestige and privilege. The question before the Chinese Communist Government was how to make proper political use of the available painters. Chinese art was, at the time of the Communist accession to power, in a curiously unsettled condition.

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