A Cultural Logic

I do not think we should be at all surprised by the revelation that cultural processes and psychological processes, that depth and complexity on both ends of this interdependent spectrum are effectively two ends of the same waveform. There is a process of self-replication at work – not purely genetic (or for that matter – memetic) but acknowledging the iteration and constant creative disassembly and recombination of concepts, artefacts and entities into novel and useful configurations is foundational to understanding what is going on here.

Aesthetic sensibilities in art and design can provide useful leverage into the processes of cultural self-replication. This image of a fractured, disassembled lion’s face tattoo is perhaps only intelligible within a particular historical (and globally connected, accelerating) creative context. We should not necessarily seek to understand what it means so much as how it functions as an instance of an evolving reflexive cultural logic.

The form and flow of ideas becomes richly layered and cross-referenced with style (content) and technique (method) which although in any new creative instance that may previously have been considered visually nonsensical and unintelligible – the form of logical recombination instantiated in the artefact or entity now makes sense to us, becomes literally and logically comprehensible and, where intelligence or tact is applied, becomes visually effective within this evolving historical stylistic context.


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