Friday, October 05, 2007

Consumer Anesthesia

My favourite kind of shopping- food shopping at shops and markets in Orvieto.

I've had the flu- being sick was so much nicer before I had children!

Yesterday Trev and I shocked ourselves by going shopping at a huge shopping centre. I'm so glad I rarely spend time in these places as they epitomize everything about the modern consumer world that I hate. I believe that the design and architecture of these shopping centres is developed to lull the consumer into an uneasy sense that they must have more. The lighting is a strange mixture of bland brightness with no shadows, and each of the hermetically sealed spokes goes on in an endless repetition of similar shops. A lot of badly fitting, poorly made goods probably leave these places as the overwhelming message being pushed into every pore of your body is to "Consume, consume,consume."

Shopping Centres are one of the reasons I believe that artists are important in contemporary life. Being an successful artist is being part of a community, or of several little communities. Buying work from your local artists and artisans means that economic transactions have a human side. Also shopping in your local high street is more environmentally friendly, and being a mindful consumer means that although you may be buying imported goods you are confronted with the reality of this choice rather than cushioned from it by a balloon of gross, deadening, consumer anesthesia.

Collect eggs straight from the chooks!


gracia said...

Collecting eggs straight from plump chooks... ah, how I wish we could have meet up when Louise and I were up in your part of the world.

Here's hoping you have managed to fully shake that flu.

take care, g xo

Rebecca-the-Wrecker said...

Well put Shannon. After months of mall abstinence, a visit to one of those terrible places can seem like a good idea, imperative even. however, you really do have to leave your soul at the door. I can wander around for hours achieving nothing except a migraine. one of the things that always gets us aussie makers at this time of year, is that it is the peak xmas retail time but stinking hot and everyone is heading off to these hyperreal airconditioned shopping megacentres and avoiding all the highstreet, small gallery, market type places. what to do?!