PERFECT IS NOT
oil, pigment, charcoal, canvas
2 x (121cm w x 152cm h)
subject - Cate Meehan
by Christopher R. Inwood
WHAT the artist writes
PERFECT IS NOT POSSIBLE BUT PROGRESS IS
The painting of the woman is in no way mimetic (mimicking reality) but her presence is clear. Her image feels rough upon the surface of the canvas, you see each of the coloured brush strokes wiped across the black, catching on each of its ridges. The image is rough but the impression and intention is present.
This work discusses the ideological standpoint of utopia and the struggle towards a global system of coexistence among humans. The statement accepts the premise that utopia doesn’t exist in the tangible but the movement is ever towards a shared, equal and sustainable future. We can use communism as an example to further investigate this concept of continual progress. For example the ideologies of communism draw from a place of good intentions and evolving morality, as its philosophy begins with equality of people and relies on an even distribution of resources that is shared with the entire populous. All humans are equal, all should have enough to eat, all should have health care, all should have human rights. In short, the goal is that primarily the basic needs of all humans are met, rather then afforded to the few who gained it by birth, force, self aggrandised divinity, or greed.
In practice this is the sharing of labour and resources across the nation state that is organised and allocated through a governing body. The fundamental foundations are hard to argue against, however when the communist ideological system was implemented through Moa’s Chinese Communist government, the system failed due to various reasons such as corruption, misinformation around resources, and power struggles with the previous power structures. This example serves to show how the communist body in charge failed to implement the progress of a governing system that theoretically is based on equality as moral foundation. The implementation of communism was a devastating failure, however the Marxist base of communism progressed the current governing systems, and this can be seen through the incorporation of socialist ethics into capitalist and neoliberal societies.
On a smaller scale in Australia, the LGBTIQ rights also exemplify this concept of progress, as we have slowly advanced over the past decades. However there is still significant progress to be made in achieving political and social equality.
Perfect is not possible, but progress is, and it is vital that we keep progressing across all scales of our society.