Leni Riefenstahl, born in 1902, was an artist of unparalleled gifts…
a woman in an industry dominated by men, one of the great formalists of the cinema on a par with Eisenstein or Welles whose two major works were funded by, and intended to glorify, the Nazis.
Triumph of the Will, a deification of Hitler, was produced in 1935.
Personality cults are most common in totalitarian regimes, like the Nazi regime.
A cult of personality arises when a country’s leader uses mass media to create an idealized and heroic public image, often through unquestioning flattery and praise. Cults of personality are often found in dictatorships and Stalinist governments.
A cult of personality is similar to general hero worship, except that it is created specifically for political leaders. However, the term may be applied by analogy to refer to adulation of religious or non-political leaders.
Leni didn’t consider what she did to be wrong. She didn’t consider herself to be a shill…She was simply…. an artist, who believed in a great cause:
When Hitler arrived on the scene, she had already directed a mountain film of her own, The Blue Light. Like many Germans living in economic despair at the time, she found der Fuhrer charismatic and lauded his efforts to build “national socialism,” by her own words unaware of his ultimate intentions. Granted the dream of every filmmaker — an unlimited budget — to photograph the annual Nazi Party rally of 1934, she created Triumph of the Will, an inestimable propaganda tool in building the myth of Hitler-as-savior.
I bring this up because it seems that Obama’s National Endowment of the Arts is encouraging artists to create propaganda projects; projects created with the explicit purpose of promoting Obama’s agenda.
Or as Ace would say: “nazi stuff”.
I was invited by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to take part in a conference call that invited a group of rising artist and art community luminaries “to help lay a new foundation for growth, focusing on core areas of the recovery agenda – health care, energy and environment, safety and security, education, community renewal.”
Backed by the full weight of President Barack Obama’s call to service and the institutional weight of the NEA, the conference call was billed as an opportunity for those in the art community to inspire service in four key categories, and at the top of the list were “health care” and “energy and environment.” The service was to be attached to the President’s United We Serve campaign, a nationwide federal initiative to make service a way of life for all Americans.
It sounded, how should I phrase it…unusual, that the NEA would invite the art community to a meeting to discuss issues currently under vehement national debate. I decided to call in, and what I heard concerned me.
We were encouraged to bring the same sense of enthusiasm to these “focus areas” as we had brought to Obama’s presidential campaign, and we were encouraged to create art and art initiatives that brought awareness to these issues. Throughout the conversation, we were reminded of our ability as artists and art professionals to “shape the lives” of those around us. The now famous Obama “Hope” poster, created by artist Shepard Fairey and promoted by many of those on the phone call, and will.i.am’s “Yes We Can” song and music video were presented as shining examples of our group’s clear role in the election.
Obama has a strong arts agenda, we were told, and has been very supportive of both using and supporting the arts in creative ways to talk about the issues facing the country. We were “selected for a reason,” they told us. We had played a key role in the election and now Obama was putting out the call of service to help create change. We knew “how to make a stink,” and were encouraged to do so.
And if you think that my fear regarding the arts becoming a tool of the state is still unfounded, I leave you with a few statements made by the NEA to the art community participants on the conference call. “This is just the beginning. This is the first telephone call of a brand new conversation. We are just now learning how to really bring this community together to speak with the government. What that looks like legally?…bare with us as we learn the language so that we can speak to each other safely… “
Is the hair on your arms standing up yet?
You can read the whole distressing piece, by Patrick Courrielche at Big Hollywood.
I see Darlene Glick at Protein Wisdom is thinking along the same lines, with her photoshop.
Glenn Beck interviewed Patrick Courrielche on his show on Sept. 1.
and covered the subject again on Sept. 2:
The MSM couldn’t be reached for comment.