The dragon and utopia


‘Is utopia the dream of a tyrant or a madman? Certainly it is not, as many believe, the wondrous project for an ideal society. Realised utopia looks more like a concentration camp rather than paradise on earth (…) Whoever invents utopias, either a philosopher or a poet, always hides his tyrannical mind behind the glamour of his imaginative geniality. His fundamental vice is the obsessive mania for trying to make human existence perfect. The object of his research is not the mystery of his own or somebody else’s soul, but the gigantic abstraction, called collectivity. He is not interested in making individual lives happy, he is not concerned with man’s happiness. His dream is to create a mass paradise, a collective Eden; his supreme ambition is to declare a State happiness. That is where his project shows its rigidity. From Plato to our present times, from Thomas Moore, Campanella, Bacon, Hobbes, Machiavelli to Cabet, Morelly, Rousseau, Fourier, Owen, Tocqueville, Saint Simon, from Weitling to Marz Huxley and Herzi, in the attempt of creating imaginary or scientific utopias, the dream of a possible Eden has always had to mix with modern violent totalitarianism. The long, almost unending series of utopian projects, has always proposed to the future of man the same monotonous image of violent happiness. (…) Blended intothe mass, the so called “new man” of the realised utopia is no longer the mirror of the universe; the depths of his soul no longer reflect a divine presence. The mass ceases to be a human community, it refuses the existence of a sacred centre within the cosmos; its technological will wants to replace God. Some of the aspects common to all utopias are: the abolition of memory, and therefore the break from ancient experiences passed on by tradition; the eulogy of alternatives and the idolatry of the new which fights myths, deities, truths and beliefs; collective hedonism; compulsory optimism, life as a mechanical apparatus. Utopias can be detected in modern and contemporary Western civilisation. The demon of utopia is starting to conquer the whole planet. Maybe there will be a lucky time in the future when it will be possible to open a museum of the horrors of utopia. For now, lets try to fix this time on paper with a pencil. This is the aim of the number of drawings and other works on display at this exhibition. Camilian Demetrescu’


21 Agosto 1983 - 28 Agosto 1983


Exhibitions Meeting Exhibitions