the white pube and the problem with monoculture
ok before we start, PSA - when we say the white pube we mean their place and movement in *the culture* NOT zarina and gab who we don't know that well but seem v nice and my (Hava) momma always said when u ASSUME u make an ASS out of U and ME. this is NOT a takedown or a callout, this is an opening for all of us to talk, thank u for ur time.
ok like most queers hava and I (maz) generate at least 5 hot takes before breakfast and only after copious application of lube. However it has come to our attention that some of you are unable to generate this content for yourselves and instead rely on the white pube. twp will be able to tell us their history a little better, but it seems that they came up as something fresh and new: a fun (dare we say radical?) anti-academic vibe and some emojis and a great aesthetic which we’ve obvs STOLEN. millenials like us who tbqh couldn’t give a fuck about paintings and galleries and men in suits and paying loads of money to go to art school and getting nothing out of it. and that is super cool and very necessary, and we are NOT saying that their criticisms are bad or that their voice shouldn’t be there. what we’re saying is that no one took up the challenge and came up after them and now there’s no other alternative voices with the same clout.
so if ur the only voice that’s apparently the authority, and ur schtick is that ur not an authority, ur gonna say stuff that’s gonna get difficult and get ppl upset because it’s *just coming from ur position*. This wouldn’t have been a problem if a bunch of other ppl could pull u up on it who have the same platform, but that hasn’t happened. So if ur the only alternative voice, then ur the authority of the alternative. If ur an authority you have to either a) divest from this authority or b) DO SOMETHING WITH IT. It’s problematic if any 2 people are this authority without rigorous discussion about who gets to speak and why, and how you ended up as the only 2 ppl who get to speak. and what are we gonna do if ppl with a lot less positional power who aren’t just #whitemen start to get upset, feel attacked, maybe stop speaking? isn’t this the role of power? and isn’t this what power does, silences critique by absorbing it into its mechanism? If that’s true then like lana del rey said to moby: ur the man. And not the cool man (is there a cool man?), the guilottenable one.
It feels like shooting fish in a barrel to be shading these 1st year art school young ‘uns who look to twp as an arbiter of taste. It’s not really speaking truth to power to make a bunch of recent fine art graduates feel a bit shit about their work, even if they are posh. these ppl are ideally not ur enemies. Surely the real issue here is that hundreds of art students leave art school every year to enter a shitty workforce with no training. and maybe they end up in sex work as a job and wanna talk about it, and maybe they want to take selfies with gifs on and feel good about it, and maybe that’s not hurting anyone tbh and idk maybe it could be important to someone or just to themselves?
It reminds us of when we were both trying to work out that we were trans and being TOLD by everyone cool that we should accept what we were supposed to be, whether that was cis-gendered or queer or whatever the fuck. I (hava) wasn’t ever really a man but i sure as hell was told i was a man for an awful long time and did a lot of bad things to myself to be one. I (maz) look back at work i did in a pre-twp landscape and ABSOLUTELY CRINGE at the pube-related feminism attempts, but it was something i needed to work through in order to allow myself a break from womanhood altogether.
maybe it’s good for a white girl to start thinking about her own periods, maybe she needs to do that. there’s a lot of obvious trans art tropes that we could call out but no one does cus they’re scared of being transphobes (AND YOU WOULD BE LOL), but we both have definitely done a bunch of em in order to learn about ourselves more and that’s totally fine. Let a cute twink enby pull something out of their ass, let a cute trans girl film herself putting on makeup for the first time, it’s fine (hava has done both).
If we’re all skating around on the surface and aesthetics of politics without ever getting in to the sticky nuances, if all we’re doing is being seen to do politics rather than doing it, then that’s probably not v good. Could go all fkin marxist (white man) (cancelled) and say critics only interpret the world when the point is to change it, but that dont mean criticism aint important and if ur gonna do it rather than idk #activism at least try and get to the root of the problems - the world is burning around us after all so seems to us like it would be cool to encourage these art students to engage in the *good fight* rather than just panic about the wokeness their practise is projecting. maybe we shouldn’t be policing ppl who are trying to make a voice or turn their experiences into something. maybe it’s good to try and find out why we literally all hate living tbh. it seems we all want a daddy but kids we need to start being our own daddys not just waiting to be daddied by someone who looks a bit different from our dad but turns out to be JUST LIKE THE OTHERS :’(
OBVIOUSLY this is erasing 3.5 years of work that zarina and gabs have done, both publicly and not. OBVIOUSLY we have not mentioned the work they do to platform artists and help ppl in the art world. OBVIOUSLY this is the exact opposite of a nuanced look at everything twp. we’re not having a go at zarina and gab. we’re not having a go at the criticism. we’re not having a go at telling dickheads to shut the fuck up. But didn’t the white pube once say that they were the art police? If so then ACAB
Tldr power corrupts, or more accurately power offers assimilation into itself, and maybe we gotta share that power/platform around a lil bit (even if it hurts ur career) and do something about this shanda
P.S to the queers that read the white pube always remember: use THE RIGHT LUBE