the rise of centralized institutions
(contracts, legislations, financial transactions )
The most innovative art of the time was no longer bucolic, picturesque landscapes and extended time, but instead urban landscapes with overlapping times. they reflected the cravings of whom are suffering the transformations of cities. Other values are being put into practice, so historical and universal representations do not make sense anymore, eg: painting a Venus de Milos.
Monet's Canvas Cathedrals
in the mid-19th century,
society went through a tremendous change.
People moved to fast-growing cities such as London, Paris and New York. The local banker here was replaced by large corporations that didn’t
know us as individuals.
Impression, Sunrise - Monet
In this era, local bankers were often ship owners too, and the imagery of maritime industry used on paper money
illustrates the significance
of shipping, fishing and shipbuilding in local economies.
– Toronto Bank note
Following the expansion of urban centres, ports and transport networks, changes also took place in the urbanization, with the construction of new housing as well as grand public buildings, such as town halls and libraries, botanical gardens and concert halls. A revival of the neo-classical and gothic styles created a visual link to a glorious past and stood as a testament to grandiosity and urban prosperity, inspiring a sense of civic pride. Such pride is evident in a number of the provincial banknotes issued in the 18th and 19th centuries, which include vignettes of new public buildings or historical landmarks.
We started to place our trust into black box systems of authority, things like legal contracts, regulation and insurance, leaded to less
trust to other people.
Trust became institutional
a new road
was opened by industrial production in England.
Brought mechanical innovations and with it steam power, which brought the coal-powered external combustion engine. It started in the late 18th century with the mechanisation of textile industry and the birth of the factory.
Creation of mass markets
It started in the second half of the 19th century, with the rising of oil-powered internal combustion engine and electrical communication. The electrification of factories and mass production were a precedent to the installation of assembly lines, designed by Henry Ford in 1913.
"Money offered a third
and completely novel
way to organize society. "
– The Steerage by Alfred Stieglitz. 1915.
speed of progress
The first half of the industrial revolution saw just one individual running the companies, but as time went on shareholders and joint stock companies emerged, and management had to change to cope with specialized positions.
The idea o progress comes from an occidental conception. From this confrontation with what
was understood and exposed as primitive
Sale of Gold in the Last Days of the Kuomintang,
Shanghai, China, 1949 - Cartier Bresson.
“A Klee painting named "Angelus Novus" shows an angel looking as though he is about to move away from something he is fixedly contemplating. His eyes are staring, his mouth is open, his wings are spread. This is how one pictures the angel of history. His face
is turned toward the past. Where we perceive a chain of events,
he sees one single catastrophe which keeps piling wreckage upon wreckage and hurls it in front of his feet. The angel would like to stay, awaken the dead, and make whole what has been smashed. But a storm is blowing from Paradise; it has got caught in his wings with such violence that the angel can no longer close them.
This storm irresistibly propels him into the future to which his back is turned, while the pile of debris before him grows skyward.
This storm is what we call progress.”.
- Walter Benjamin