FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE PART 227 Maximilien Robespierre (1758-1794), Featured artist is Martha Colburn

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Terror Robespierre and the French Revolution

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Francis Schaeffer noted:

In the French Revolution, human reason was made supreme and christianity was pushed aside. In 1789, with the French Revolution at its height, the members of the National Assembly swore to establish a constitution: The Declaration of the Rights of Man. To make their outlook clear, the French changed the calendar and called 1792 the “year one,” and destroyed many of the things of the past, even suggesting the destruction of the cathedral at Chartres. They proclaimed the goddess of Reason in Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris and in other churches in France, including Chartres. In Paris, the goddess was personified by an actress, Demoiselle Candeille, carried shoulder high into the cathedral by men dressed in Roman costumes.
 Like the humanists of the Renaissance, the men of the Enlightenment pushed aside the Christian base and heritage and looked back to the old pre-Christian times. When the French Revolution tried to reproduce the English conditions without the Reformation base, but rather on Voltaire’s humanistic base, the result was a bloodbath and a rapid breakdown into the authoritarian rule of Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821).

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 In Sept. 1792 began the massacre in which some 1,300 prisoners were killed. Before it was all over, the government and its agents killed 40,000 people, many of them peasants. Maximilien Robespierre (1758-1794), the revolutionary leader, was himself executed in July 1794. This destruction came not from outside the system; it was produced by the system.
 The influence of the Declaration of the Rights of Man, as seen within the context of the French Revolution, can hardly be overestimated. Within a period of two years, an extreme form of democracy had been established and all titles of privilege abolished. In subsequent decades, based on the achievements of the revolution, political theorists began suggesting even more dramatic changes in government–changes that in the 20th century are called socialism, Communism, and anarchism. It is no exaggeration to say that subsequent revolutions in Europe, especially the Russian Revolution of 1917, had their antecedent in the ideas and practices that were spawned by the French Revolution.

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December 09, 2007

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Martha Colburn Brings the War Home | “New York Close Up” | Art21

Featured artist is Martha Colburn

Martha Colburn

Martha Colburn was born in 1971 in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, formerly lived and worked in New York, and currently lives between Amsterdam and Lisbon.

Colburn began working with film in the ’90s when she acquired a used projector and began splicing found footage into her works. Now, she works for years on a single project, and her films result from intensive research and meticulously rendered stop-motion animations that include photography, collage, and painting.

The artist’s vibrant imagery can belie the seriousness of the themes she addresses, which include America’s history of war and violence, and crystal-meth addiction in rural areas. While her work is viewed in both film and art contexts, she has said that the individual films are secondary to the ideas and images behind her work.

Links:
Artist’s website

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