Critical medeology is not the depiction of reality in such a way that it is just seen or merely mirrored, or the recovery of an ‘essence’ of reality. Critical Medeology aims to penetrate the real, to attempt a critical understanding of the real and develop a practice within the dialectical contradictions of the ideological and historical production of the real itself. This means considering not how artworks ‘reflect’ the relations of production, but what art’s position is within them, and to consider the means of artistic production in relation to the mode of production and distribution of artistic texts and artifacts within a given society.
The Medeology Modus implies the ability for flux, change and choice on the part of the presenter and the observer through social constructs and applications. The following is an outline of the aims and objectives concerning a Critical Media
theory of practice. Medeologists share certain characteristics, if not in their styles
and methods, then in their aims and philosophical objectives. The following is a
working definition of Medeological strategies for negotiating the hi-low culture dialectic. Medeology can only be defined within specific contexts, as its methods and aims are always changing. Medeology as a representational strategy aims at:
1) A critique and representation of social conflicts and contradictions in an
attempt to understand the world and give new insights into media representations
and society. It needs to be continually self-critical and re-defining.
2) An intellectual apprehension of the world, learning from the mediations of the
real and from developments in cognition.
3) A practice seeking to critique, resist and oppose dominant hegemonic
processes and be socially and politically engaged as a creative resource.
4) A research programme that is intent on combining critical form and
content in art and culture.
5) Not being solely figurative or abstract in style, but relating these two
stylistic formations without taking appearances at face value.
6) A commitment to the view that representations of the world need to be
linked to a critical understanding of society, as being both structured
and characterized by emergence and change. Reality is a changing
and evolving process, therefore mutability must also be an integral
aspect of medeology. This also involves developing and changing
strategies in the face of social transformation and the expression of life
as consisting of change and therefore, as being socially changeable.
7) Exposing the relationship between the status of cultural artifacts as a
material product in the world, embodying the contradictions of the
social world within their form, whilst exemplifying and expressing the
deeper features of society.
8) Employing a plurality of artistic forms and strategies that are based on
the need for historical self-representation within culture.
9) The expression of the real experiences that have been suppressed
and marginalized within dominant visual cultures, such as race,
gender, sex or class.
10) Developing the use of a breadth of media to engage with the dominant
market style and art managers.
11) Rejecting technical, formal or conceptual (the theoretical means of
representation) conservatism and dogma.
12) Plundering the historical ‘tool-kit’ of art history, theory and practical
13) Not being a style chosen completely by the cultural producer for a
message, as form and content are subject to various determining and
appropriate aspects of time and place.
14) Be adequate to social and material circumstances, which involves an
open-ended forms, cultural conventions, techniques and materials.
15) Not being summoned from past historical moments, but art that is
produced from the present that adopts a critical engagement with
16) A development of new techniques, new technologies of representation
as well as new intellectual and aesthetic mobility across diverse media.
Medeology is also intended to respond to different conceptual and
aesthetic questions and, therefore constantly expresses an emergent
culture from inner social forces.
17) Negotiating the strategies and resources available for use, the spaces
worked in, the position of cultural production within institutional bases
and their implications within those power relations.
18) Finding new audiences, new spaces and sites of dissemination, new
tactics which includes strategies of communication and distribution
involved in the creative process. This means working towards the
dissolution of the high-low culture divide, and an intervention in high art
and popular culture.
19) Being a creative and critical part of a world that is changing, which
needs an open-ended theory and practice that stems from and returns
to lived social relations.
20) A study of and critique of the mass media in all its formations and
mediations in order to give new insight into social conditioning, determination
and responses to mass communication technologies and the media environment.