A little over two years ago (how time flies!) I did a review of the final part of the “Qatsi” trilogy – Godfrey Reggio’s seminal nonverbal films which captured spectacular visual images of the world, accompanied by an equally stiring score by Philip Glass. Looking back at these highly thoughtful and provocative works (including others such as Baraka) when I saw a piece written by the said director I thought it was about time for some reflection…
By any measure, we live in an extraordinary and extreme time. Language can no longer describe the world in which we live. With antique ideas and old formulas, we continue to describe a world that is no longer present. In this loss of language, the word gives way to the image as the ‘language’ of exchange, in which critical thought disappears to a diabolic regime of conformity – the hyper-real, the omnipresent image. Language, real place gives way to numerical code, the real virtual; metaphor to metamorphosis; body to disembodiment; natural to supernatural; many to one. Mystery disappears, replaced by the illusion of certainty in technological perfection… [read on].
Can you see where this is going? Yes, without even noticing it have we fallen into our own self-created Matrix by which we have insulated ourselves from reality through technology? Sounds far-fetched? Perhaps, but in a world where we have had to re-invent organic-this and eco-friendly-that surely a few alarm bells should be ringing?! Perpetuated by cheap air travel the world may be a smaller place but at the same time travel will become pointless when everywhere looks the same as everywhere else. Just take the UK as an example – every city has the same shops etc that distinguishing between them becomes positively hard. Globalisation? Techno-fascism? Has technology replaced/overwritten nature? You tell me!
N.B. I’m not arguing either way, just presenting a topic for reflection.