I am now at what once used to be my favorite coffee spot in New York City to write at, Doma Cafe. I have not been here in two years (as I have been living in Los Angeles).
There used to be avant-garde painting adorning the walls, the music was hip jazz and writers from no names as myself to award winning and highly published ones, buzzing with the most fascinating conversation, created the landscape for the interior. It was alive, a rare, modern day Bohemian meeting place in the middle of a rapidly modernizing city.
And now, over-sized, predictable photographs cover the walls, the outlets have been covered up and no more inexpensive refills on the coffee. What’s worse, they have succumbed to being victimized by the hipster movement.
I am not quite sure if I am the only one who sees this, but, the artistic canvas that once used to be made up of the great cities of this country are all but gone now, replaced with unimaginative replications of periods we all wish we were living in. What people forget to understand, though, is that the eras we now love and expensively emulate aren’t what we assume them to be. They were not perfect, optimistic eras of unending love and community. The strife we live in now does not compare with that of our decades past. The only difference, at least artistically, is that in the past, the artists were the social commentators, the artists were the revolution and the artists were more inspired to strive for originality within themselves rather than through a focus-group success model.
As a result, we have all come to accept these modern day, off-beat replications being as original ideas.
I suppose it is all a cycle and that all will come around again.
Life always seems to be one, no? Round and round?
It just saddens me, though, that this country, my country, has become not just unsupportive of its artists but so violently opposed to art itself.