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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Food for thought » » Definition of "Magic" (9 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Pop Haydn
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Quote:
On Apr 18, 2021, tommy wrote:
All art is propaganda. I will say the main message of our magic is not everything is what it appears to be.


Propaganda is not art. There is plenty of art that is not propaganda.
tommy
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Https://www.amazon.co.uk/All-Art-Propaga......56033070

George Orwell is one who knows propaganda when he sees it.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Pop Haydn
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Quote:
On Apr 19, 2021, tommy wrote:
Https://www.amazon.co.uk/All-Art-Propaga......56033070

George Orwell is one who knows propaganda when he sees it.


Well, it is settled, then.
Pop Haydn
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Tommy, what is the propaganda aspect of this:

tommy
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"This is probably one of the greatest tricks I know" seems to convey to the audience that what is about to be performed is a lie/art. What is then performed in effect seems to be true/science. So, I would say that the message is "Not everything is as it seems, and not everything that seems is. Between being and seeming there is always a point of agreement as if being and seeming were two inclined planes that converge and become one. There is a slope and the possibility of sliding down that slope, and when that happens, one reaches a point at which being and seeming meet."

- Jose Saramago

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If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Pop Haydn
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Quote:
On Apr 19, 2021, tommy wrote:
"This is probably one of the greatest tricks I know" seems to convey to the audience that what is about to be performed is a lie/art. What is then performed in effect seems to be true/science. So, I would say that the message is "Not everything is as it seems, and not everything that seems is. Between being and seeming there is always a point of agreement as if being and seeming were two inclined planes that converge and become one. There is a slope and the possibility of sliding down that slope, and when that happens, one reaches a point at which being and seeming meet."

- Jose Saramago

Blindness

Smile


But no such message was intended. It certainly isn't the point of the experience. There is no propaganda.
Pop Haydn
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Propaganda is when the effect of the impossible is used not for itself, but in service to delivering a message. Doing a color changing hank with a "Don't do Drugs" message, or Grandma's Necklace with a Gospel message, or any performance where the point is not to create an experience, but to teach a lesson or deliver a message.

Magic for its own sake is art, magic in service to message is a craft. Acting can be an art, but it can be used by swindlers and spies.
tommy
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Since intent is a mental state and I am not a mind reader I find it difficult to see your intent. Whatever your intent was, not everything is as it seems in our magiic, is it?
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Pop Haydn
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I don't know what you mean. To the artist, everything is exactly what it seems. I am not trying to trap you. I don't understand your position on art or propaganda. What I am saying is that magic can be an art when it is performed for its own sake, but when used to send a message, tell a story, make a point, it is magic being used in service to some other end. The rules that govern performance change when the magic is used in service to another end. That is what Maskelyne and Devant said.

What do you disagree with?
funsway
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Fine thoughts, Whit, but any member of the audience may view an effects as art regardless of the intent of the performer.

All magic presentations should include some the performers passion and can be viewed as artistic in form, rhythm and flow.
Otherwise it is just mechanics and skill demonstration.

So, I agree that intent can diminish "magic as art," but one can never control what other perceives as art.

I might even agree with something Tommy is offering if I could understand it and if his position stood in one place.

Magic may not always be art, but the terms "lie" and "propaganda" do not apply to anything I do as a magician.
I always say exactly what I am about to do, and then always do what I say.

If I say, "I am now going to demonstrate something you might consider impossible," where is the lie? Where is the propaganda?

Whether or not my presentation is viewed as artistic or not is another issue. Probably not these days as I tend to drop things a lot.

I cna only create the astonishment. Whether or not the observer considers it to be magic is also a separate issue.

My task is not to sell them on the idea of the demonstration being either art or magic.
I just work at eliminating any other possible cause or perception and allow magic to speak for itself.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

eBooks at https://www.lybrary.com/ken-muller-m-579928.html questions at ken@eversway.com
Pop Haydn
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I am talking about the choices a performer makes, not how it is perceived. If you want to produce art, you choose to do magic one way, if you want to use magic to sell a product, make a point, or tell a story--the rules change, and to accomplish your goals you have to know the differences. This is what Maskelyne and Devant say, what do you disagree with?
funsway
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If performance magic is not about perception then why have an audience?

Magic happens in the mind of the observer, not in the hands of the performer. Art too I think.

I am not disagreeing with anyone, just stating a view. If you see disagreement, that is in your mind also.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

eBooks at https://www.lybrary.com/ken-muller-m-579928.html questions at ken@eversway.com
Pop Haydn
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Thanks for all the clarification. If you are not disagreeing with me, then fine.
tommy
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On propaganda: in performing a card trick my only intent is to entertain the company and I do so essentially by first asserting some incredible nonsense and then prove it true with an experiment. The how is a mystery but on the whole, they know I am using some sort of trickery. My intent in short is fun, however, I think the tricks tell them that not everything is what seems, that there are card sharps, con men, charlatans and the like out there that can use such trickery to cheat them. There is I suggest this sort of undercurrent to our magic. It does not stop it from being art at all. Think of it as public relations.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
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