PRINT October 2009


F. T. Marinetti

FUTURISM, ONE HUNDRED YEARS OLD this year, arose from a decadent Italian playboy’s near-death experience. The innovative young gentleman in question, F. T. Marinetti, was frittering away his father’s large fortune by publishing Symbolist poetry and racing fine cars. In 1908, Marinetti ran his machine into a ditch and almost drowned. Most dilettantes would have retreated to the polo ponies. Marinetti was instantly born again as an apostle of mechanized speed and violence.

Contemporary “futurism” is a gentle, serviceable activity. In 2009, futurism coaxes clients to step outside the box of daily business routines and think in terms of “strategic forecasting.” This futurism’s primary interests are population demographics and technical development; even in a year of financial collapse and climate crisis, futurism doesn’t pout, scream, or throw lightning bolts. The grandest aspiration of a

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