Popped Culture

Pop culture IS modern art. Ben Frost is the perfect example of what happens when you take MTV and celebrate it for everything that’s wrong with the media. Propaganda Pop. It’s always interesting to see how American POP culture is percieved in the eyes of those who are looking from the outside in. For decades upon decades, American (or Western) culture has been the powerful and influential trend-setter towards those of other countries. I remember watching old footages of Michael Jackson’s international concerts back in his hey-days and seeing a packed coliseum of Japanese fans singing along with Michael verbatim. What’s astounding with that is the fact that the majority of those fans do not speak english. No other country in any part of history has ever had a ‘pop’ icon with that much power to where Americans would be shouting a song in a language that’s foreigned to them.


As times have changed, we’ve seen a huge evolution in American media. Sadly, but truly, we are NOT the powerhouse we once were. Europe has become the go-to continent for fashions and trends. Asia has become the technological capital of the world. What went wrong?

I started this discussion based on a blog from The Hundreds and a Newsweek article written by Fareed Zakaria. As I was reading, the one thing that I remembered was this artist Ben Frost.
Frost has used popular American icons and collaged together pieces of propaganda that tells the ‘dirty’ sides of our entertainments. Everything tied in well with the death of American media and how we’re killing ourselves with bad reality shows and ‘ringtone’ music. From the outside looking in, we can relate to Ben Frost and say, in harmony, “What the HECK?” Have we become a laughing-stock?

This isn’t to say that everything ‘American’ is bad. We’re still a country thriving on creativity and making statements, but these things are not celebrated on the mainstream scale any longer. I find the most influential people in our society are the children who have no oppurtunities in their neighborhoods to progress. Some of the most talented people I’ve ever met are wasting away in jail-cells or drug addictions because sometimes, doing crime does pay for the moments when college degrees fail to put food on the table. We can still make it to the driver’s seat from here. Just don’t let the corporations know.




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May 2008
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