Artistic expression: The voice of the suppressed

Ana Pacella-Crespo/ Contributing Writer

Art is something that humans have always used as a way to express themselves in the many situations of life. That is how a lot of music styles, fashion eras, and movements in general have made an impact on history.  In my opinion, artistic expression is  the best and the most influential way for people to express feelings and confront any disagreement, or way to think different from society.

A movement that have marked history forever is Dada, or also called Dadaism.  It was created in Zurich, Switzerland in the beginning of the 20th century around the 1920s as a consequence of the horrors and craziness of World War I. Between their artist are Salvador Dali, and Tristan Tzara. Dadaism was found in almost any form of art: poetry, sculptures, photography, painting, collages, and music.

From my personal perspective, one of the smartest and most important movements of all times, because it not only caught the attention of regular people, but also from authorities involved in the politics since it treated topics such as anti-bourgeois and anti-war. Definitely a form of art very unique, inasmuch the artist were not focusing on creating a pleasant piece of art, instead, their intentions were to create artwork that generated questions about society.

An American movement that have changed the world perspective in a very radical way was the Hippie era, along with the civil rights movement and anti-war protests, after Dada took place. It began in the United States, specifically in San Francisco, in the 1960s. I believe it was a very distinctive movement characterized by the way people utilized counter-culture fashion, the use of recreational drugs, and the take off of psychedelic music, as a way to express themselves, and making experimentation a new social norm, influencing american politics and the everyday life.

Photo coutesy of Flickr

Photo coutesy of Flickr

More recently, another cultural movement that emerged as a result of unfairness, and repression from the government is the K-Pop. A music style that involves popular South Korean music, and not only that, but also audiovisual elements characterized for being very colorful and bright. The K-Pop culture also has its own fashion, characterized for being very modern, wearing pieces such as ripped jeans, short skirts, high heels and leather clothes; vibrant, and multicolored.

This form of art is not only famous on its own country, but it has become virialized worldwide. This movement arose much earlier than when it became popular in the 1980s, since it started to develop from the suppression that the Japanese had to the South Korean people in the early 20th century, a way for them to express their feelings against the government.

It is clear how art in all its manifestations, has become a pacific form of protest used to express, reveal, and fight for something that society opposes or does not approve of. I believe it is the best way to let the authorities and suppressors know how certain society feels about anything that people might disagree with. That is why I say that art is an escape for all of us that allows us to fully express our right to freedom of religion and expression; even in places where that right is not given.

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