NewFaustianWorldPlato used the word "daemon" to speak about an inner strength with which the man can go beyond the sensible limits, reach the supersensible then God. Faust had this daemon. A demon that burned him by the desire to go beyond the limits of his human possibilities without ever settle for.
He wanted knowledge and power beyond the limits that nature had assigned to the human faculties. An incessant and insatiable desire based on the conviction that nothing in the world could fully satisfy him. Due to this really strong conviction he made a deal with the devil according to which he would never stop for a moment because in that moment he would be ordinary like other men in whom the divine spark about which Scheler speaks is now turned off.
For more than sixty years Goethe has worked to the Faust poem making it in the collective consciousness a celebrity - a symbol of the modern spirit oriented to the progress, the scientific view of the world, the thirst for knowledge.
In the face of the new opportunities offered by media, by photography and its realistic capabilities, by video and performance and their ability to create connections, a lot of people are celebrating the funeral of painting as devoid of characteristics capable of expressing the contemporaneity. So painting has been downgraded, belittled, marginalized in favor of other artistic forms more "participatory" being precisely the participation one of the keywords of our society.
Faced with these negative conceptions of painting there are artists who did not give up because they have the so- called streben about which Goethe spoke, that is, an inner tension that impels them not to be satisfied of their condition constantly reaching new goals, wishing to overcome all human limits.
Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Glenn Brown, Maurizio Cannavacciuolo, Andrea Chiesi, Tiffany Chung, Alberto Di Fabio, Kepa Garraza, NS Harsha, Alessandro Moreschini, Mauro Pipani, Imran Qureshi, Terry Rodgers, Raqib Shaw, Li Songsong, Philippe Taaffe, Josep Tornero, Jan Worst are artists with a Faustian factor: a strong and recognizable artistic identity and an exasperated virtuosity that allows them to compete with the infinite possibilities of the computer, with the precision of photographic performance, with the reactions and reports of video and performance.
But pay attention: it is not just a virtuoso exercise of technical expertise because these artists mix an aesthetic output like few others with a research that ranges from science to sociology, from multiculturalism to localism, from rationality to sentiment expressing in this way the contemporary social complexity based on crossing the boundaries (cultural boundaries -> multiculturalism according to Beck, Giddens and Sartori’s view; geographical boundaries -> globalization according to Bauman, Klein, Sassen’s view, physicists boundaries -> Internet and virtual communities according to Castells’ view) and on the overcoming of human limits (virtuosity).
In a resigned world where the fate of man seems to be returned outside of their chances (we are going back to the idea of fate so dominant in the classical world but so present in the contemporary idea of being able to solve problems winning the lottery rather than investing in the improvement of our skills and abilities) with these artists it returns the idea of homo faber maker of his own destiny and therefore able to use the most of what nature has made available. Just look at the artworks of these artists to see that even back the idea of the demiurge that forms and transforms matter because it has both technical skills as a craftsman and ideas and knowledge as an intellectual.