The term 'Critical Realism' has existed since the early 20th century. Founded in philosophy and came to art through the Hungarian Marxist political thinker and artistic critic, Georg Lukacs, Lukacs states “Artists should approach their subjects not as isolated exceptions, but as typical of the circumstances of their time”. Recently, research has been undertaken of Critical Realism in contemporary Art. Here we find the possibility to “(re)invent a socio-critical art in a globalised visual culture”. “But in our cool, postmodern times, the place for commitment has become highly confuse. The naïve confusion between Critical Realism and notions like Social(ist) Realism or Political Correctness has complexified that situation”.
Presently art can be anything and anything can be art. The trouble with this is all seriousness is lost. Precise intention is not on the agenda for contemporary, fashionable post-modern art. By using an already established philosophical term for post, post-modern theory, I intend to take that term and (re)create a base for its artistic counterpart. Critical realistic art will aim at creating a dialogue about real issues in life, to discuss the human condition, our outlook to the future and the present sociological / political landscape. Critical Realism in essence is to be critical of the reality we all inhabit.
Work Should Have (Manifesto)
1- Intention to communicate something that is about, or can affect life. Be it political, personal or environmental, they are all relevant and can affect each other.
2 - To answer our own questions. To make work about our own beliefs, can cause them to change, as we gather knowledge
on subjects. This in turn can be criticised by other people and
causes debate, the essence of Critical Realism, to seek a truth,
through debate and understanding.
3 - Work can be in any medium.
David John Beesley
Painting; Straw dogs (Short listed for John Moores painting Competition 2006)