Last night I had the distinct pleasure of attending a lecture by renowned media and art theorist Gene Youngblood at SFAI, the first in the Institute's spring Radical Directing series and co-presented by SF Cinemateque. Although Youngblood didn't speak at length about directing as such he did have a lot to say about living outside the broadcast, finding media that is speaking truth and not just repackaging counterculture as consumer culture. Thanks to the internet truthful news sources are definitely out there, and it is up to us to construct a media diet that encourages conversation in a way that refers to the Latin origin of the word, a turning around together. Because we need to get radical, get back to the root, if there is any chance of turning around the apocalypse we seem intent on creating for ourselves. Just today Art Practical published a profile of Youngblood that opened with a wonderfully prescient quote of his from 1993:
I make a rather modest proposal that world peace, human liberty, and a healthy environment can only be achieved through a communications revolution.
His idea of utopia revolves around what is not permitted, "leaving the culture without leaving the country." And he calls upon artists and writers to be disciplined dreamers, to lead social modernization with the artistic. This was really only the first half of the lecture too, with the second part "The Challenge To Create On the Same Scale As We Can Destroy" delivered at Yerba Buena tomorrow night. Go get some tools for the revolution.