Thursday, June 24, 2010

A Poor Substitute

Last night while watching Bravo's Work Of Art (#workoFart), I was suddenly reminded that some fifteen years ago, the network's programming actually consisted of art.  This realization hit me during a commercial promo featuring all of the character's from Bravo's reality shows.  What a difference a decade and a change in ownership can make.  It's a change that, seems a natural progression - all things devolve, but this current nod to culture, but Work Of Art, this cheap facsimile of the creative process processed, through it's very presence ironically points to this past of showcasing quality work,  in a space that was more free from commercial constraint.  There was an inherent commitment to culture apparent in the nature of the network. In it's more distant former self, the network aired performance arts programs and independant films.  I think the first time I was introduced to Cirque du Soleil was via Bravo.  Not that I think Cirque is the pinnacle of anything - it is simply indicative of the potential for discovery the channel offered, airing things that could be found nowhere else.  The final vestage of the old Bravo that has carried over into more recent history is Inside the Actor's Studio, which itself probably has gone on too long, having long since exhausted all possibilities of finding worthy interview subjects.  While it is funny that the current Bravo is a Bizarro World version of the old Bravo, Work of Art as a campy, trashy dip into the artworld, in light of my recent recollection, it's really just pathetic.

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