Stumbled upon Groceteria, a blog about American grocery stores from 1920-1980s. There’s a friendliness and quirkiness to the architecture, store layout and typography that I find utterly optimistic and charming.

My current exhibition at Sight School, Irrational Exuberance (Asst. Colors), is informed by artists’ shops, which are variations and tangents of real shops. Better still, grocery stores are at an intersection of commerce and food (where there’s vitality and latent good cheer and humor: think of dancing bananas, cheese balls and hot dogs).

54. …Camp asserts that good taste is not simply good taste; that there exists, indeed, a good taste of bad taste. … The discovery of the good taste of bad taste can be very liberating. The man who insists on high and serious pleasures is depriving himself of pleasure; he continually restricts what he can enjoy…. Here Camp taste supervenes upon good taste as a daring and witty hedonism. It makes the man of good taste cheerful, where before he ran the risk of being chronically frustrated….
55. Camp taste is, above all, a mode of enjoyment, of appreciation – not judgment. Camp is generous. It wants to enjoy. It only seems like malice, cynicism. (Or, if it is cynicism, it’s not a ruthless but a sweet cynicism.) Camp taste doesn’t propose that it is in bad taste to be serious; it doesn’t sneer at someone who succeeds in being seriously dramatic. What it does is to find the success in certain passionate failures.
56. Camp taste is a kind of love, love for human nature. It relishes, rather than judges, the little triumphs and awkward intensities of “character.” . . . Camp taste identifies with what it is enjoying. People who share this sensibility are not laughing at the thing they label as “a camp,” they’re enjoying it. Camp is a tender feeling.(Susan Sontag, “Notes on Camp”)

Play The Clash’s “Lost in the Supermarket” on iLike/MySpace.


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