Rebel Art Manifesto
Aria-Joshes Waterford

If you want to be a successful contemporary artist you have to go to the city but in the Age of Aquarius (an age we are right in the middle of) there is tonnes of infrastructure, especially in the western suburbs. The Hawkesbury is considered part of Western Sydney yet when it comes to contemporary art, it is mostly untouched of course we have a gallery and an art society, but these are places mostly dedicated to traditional art. The Hawkesbury Gallery has some contemporary art exhibitions, but it would probably have more if there were more practising contemporary artists in the Hawkesbury. The Hawkesbury is well known for its history but that doesn’t mean that it has to fall behind on the contemporary art front. I can safely say we have virtually no performance art. The closest we have is theatre.

Traditional art is traditionally beautiful. Although they say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, beauty is not the only type of aesthetic present in art. Have you ever seen something so ugly that you can’t look away and it sticks in your mind because you can’t make sense of it? Or have you seen something so complex and scientific you find yourself staring at it for hours? A beautiful view of aesthetics is generally an unchallenging one. Even the way art can be presented is enough to make you think, or even feel. Groundbreaking art should make you feel something in a similar fashion to the way an actor can make you feel something. You can watch an actor and feel something without also thinking “he/she wasn’t pretty enough” Art can perform in much of the same way except you’re required to ponder it for a while and discuss it. Art is meant to move you and activist art is meant to move you to take action. Rebel art as opposed to other forms of art is never saleable and resists the urge to be appropriated by capitalism. Rebel art stands alone appealing to societies conscience and proving there’s more to human existence than the pursuit of money.

On further investigation about the importance of Rebel Art, Albert Camus points out in his 1951 novel the Rebel …It is those who know how to rebel, at the appropriate moment, against history who really advance its interests. Proving furthermore that the act of successful rebellion is one that moves further away from recklessness and into the light of justice as Albert Camus further points out Life is this dichotomy itself, the mind soaring over volcanoes of light, the madness of justice the eventuating intransience of moderation… Rebel Art’s intervention keeps world leaders honest or alternatively exposes the dishonesty in order to help civilians choose their leaders wisely. Jacques Ranciere points out that Politics is not the exercise of Power. Politics to be defined in its own terms as a specific mode of action that is enacted by a specific subject and that has its own proper rationality. In this way Rebel Art interfere’s with power structures in order to persuade it to honesty or expose it’s corruption.

Art can be bought but Rebel Art is more and often not for sale. Rebel Art is transformational and fosters self-expression. Rebel art is wild and uninhibited and often leads to complete acceptance of the self. Rebel Art doesn’t discriminate but it does easily entice a younger generation. Rebel Art is a platform for positive change and fully embracing of democratic rights and democratic voices. Rebel Art inspires you deep in your gut and creeps into your heart. You can’t experience Rebel Art and not feel something. Rebel Art is brave despite of fear. Rebel art is liberating and empowering. Rebel art breaks rules that are violations of human rights. Rebel art is unapologetically powerful as it gives power to the powerless downtrodden and marginalised. Rebel art is revolutionary. Rebel art simultaneously thinks of the future whilst empowering the present. Rebel art is inclusive and open minded.

Rebel art is a weird, bold risk taker that cannot be tamed. Rebel art does not pander to peoples tastes but connects with audiences’ hearts in deep and transformational ways. Rebel art is a vigilante in ways that cuts the red tape and digs deep into your soul so much so that you can’t walk away and do nothing. Rebel art stops traffic, not with beauty but with evocative design. Rebel art tests boundaries and limits. Rebel art can be comedic critiquing. Rebel art is provocative whilst having full agency. Rebel art asks for consent whilst always expecting you to respect its boundaries. Rebel art tests the limitations of traditional mediums; you can create with vegemite, tomato paste, period blood etc. Rebel art takes hygienic precautions if its medium is potentially a biohazard.

Rebel art only accepts traditional mediums if they are used in non- traditional ways. Rebel art judge’s art with an open mind and is considerate of others feelings. Rebel art embraces performance art and installation art. Rebel art challenges traditional perceptions of aesthetics. Rebel art is inclusive and does not tolerate any form of prejudice. Rebel art exercises some caution when taking risks as it takes care of itself, fellow artists and audience members. Rebel art is not classist and will rethink what defines art. Rebel art is a form of art that can simultaneously heal whilst it also empowers. Rebel artists might find that they have been rebellious in their childhood but in a way that was reasonable half the time. Rebel art is a way of life for many as it does not leave one in darkness but lights the way out of trying times.

Rebel art is the heart of radicalisation. Rebel art is autonomous and independent whilst also being supportive of fellow artists. Rebel art is intense and bizarre whilst allowing room for critical thought. Rebel art does not leave one stranded but flourishes enough within itself to a point where loneliness can’t breathe. Rebel art brings contemporary art to rural areas to empower the area and abolish rural stereotypes.

Rebel art attracts more tourism and multiculturalism to rural areas empowering the area to be more versatile whilst still maintaining the quietness cityscapes lack. Rebel art has no hierarchy, although more experienced artists might mentor younger artists, they will listen to the younger artists equally as they offer a fresh perspective that the older artists must work to maintain, everyone has something to offer and teach. Rebel artists respect themselves and others and may not always be right but if they should make mistakes, they will always rectify a situation with an apology and thoughtfulness. Rebel art can pop up in unexpected places. Rebel art is loud and stands out in the crowd grabbing your attention to a point where you can’t look away. Rebel art also speaks to society and into communities, so it might empower rural communities to envision new 
ways to enrich their communities.

Rebel art is the future of art but also the future of rural Australia. The birth of Rebel art will be in the Hawkesbury but will soon spread to other rural areas. Rebel Art is a quest for authenticity but in a way that exceeds the bounds of human expectation. Rebel Art glorifies action with both boldness and with enormous drive, but Rebel art is also a rare thing.

Rebel art is a zest for life you never knew existed. Rebel art peels away your regular day to day self to reveal a burning desire for something more. Rebel art is your wildest dreams of creative desire come to life.

Rebel art is your spirit longing for more…but only you can find out what it is because Rebel art gives power to the self so one can achieve one’s highest potential.

Rebel art is committed to sharing one’s desires for the present and future in such a way that moves something deep within the audience. It will bring you to tears or make you laugh with joy, but it will never let you forget what you saw and experienced whilst you were in the presence of the movement. Rebel art is a movement that does not discriminate and tests the boundaries and limitations of art and its audiences, it tests the boundaries and limitations of the art scene in the Hawkesbury and brings more people to come and witness its majestic beauty. Rebel art will test your perceptions of freedom in a way that can liberate people from the shackles of their mind.

Rebel art is both positive inspiration whilst also shouting at the institutions and systems that trap and abuse us. Rebel art will call to attention the injustices of the systems that claim to help us and demand proper action from these systems. Rebel art leaves no good person behind. Rebel art will widen your perspective of the world and of art.

Rebel art will successfully shock their audience but for good cause and intellectual thought. Rebel art will empower its audience to vote thoughtfully, speak loudly and express themselves and their desires for a better world. Rebel art does not allow one to be passive but expresses a burning desire to have people become more assertive about their desires for a better world. Rebel art will not allow someone to fall silent on their dreams but inspires people to have the courage to put their dreams into action. Denying yourself the life you truly desire is not realism. You deserve better.

Art is an act of rebellion in a system that has its eyes wide shut.

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