On Kitsch

The need for Kitsch arises when genuine emotion has become rare, when desire lies dormant and needs artificial stimulation. Kitsch is an answer to boredom. When objects cannot elicit desire, man desires desire. More precisely, what is enjoyed or sought is not a certain object, but an emotion, a mood, even, or rather especially, if there is no encounter with an object which would warrant that emotion….Love can itself be said to be Kitsch if that person is used only to stimulate a feeling of love, if love has its center not in the beloved but within itself.

-from The Meaning of Modern Art (1968)
Karsten Harries

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