TABLE OF CONTENTS

PRINT Summer 1988

REMOTE CONTROL

Television

CRANK UP THE OLD democracy machine, it’s election time again. Oil its rusty spokes, resuscitate its finicky engine, and push it into the center ring, into the circus of symbolic antiquities that serve as a front for the motors of power running the show. And what a show it is! Everything is designed and constructed around a calculated frenzy of posing, polling, and Q&A. It was the notion of the vote that laid the groundwork for the development of the mass media, and accordingly they reach their crescendo of fictive consensus through the elaborate entertainments of electoral politics. Opinion is not produced but reproduced, and candidates don’t have visions, they are visions—told and shown via our favorite light source, the aptly named tele-vision.

Beaming out lures of phantom meaning, TV reproduces and decorates a singular model whose methodology is the hologram of immediacy. You are there.

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the Summer 1988 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.