Utopia =is an imagined community or society that possesses highly desirable or nearly perfect qualities. – Word origin is Greek for ‘no place‘.
The word was coined by Thomas Moore, in his book ‘Utopia’, describing a fictional island in the Atlantic ocean.
Dystopia=an imagined place or state in which everything is unpleasant or bad, typically a totalitarian or environmentally degraded one.
Examples of Utopian ideas in both art and society:
Bauhaus – It was a utopian vision of art and design. That art was a powerful tool to influence the world. ‘Making the world a better place’.
Buckminster Fuller – ‘4D House’ 1927, ‘Dymaxion Car #3’ 1933, ‘Geodesic Dome’ (The Eden Project 2000)
Walt Disney – Disneyland, A portal of the American dream through fantasy.
Sputnik II satellite 1957 – Was the fit artificial earth satellite, it travelled at about 29,000 kilometres per hour, taking 96.2 minutes to complete each orbit.
Apollo II Mission 21st July 1969 – The first man on the moon, there is controversy of whether or not this really happened.
‘Merry Pranksters’ – Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters are noted for the sociological significance of a lengthy road trip they took in the summer of 1964, traveling across the United States in a psychedelic painted school bus called Furthur or Further, organizing parties and giving out/taking LSD. They has a different view of how we should live, they were going against the stereotypical consumer orientated American Dream.
Ant Farm – ‘Media Van’ 1971, ’50 x 50 pillow’, Media Bern’ 1971, ‘House of the Century’ 1971-73.
Agnes Denes – ‘Wheat Field’ 1982
Examples of Dystopian ideas in both art and society:
CCTV – Congestion charge, Computers being able to identify faces, British Government Communication HQ.
Singularity – is the hypothesis that the invention of artificial super-intelligence will abruptly trigger runaway technological growth, resulting in unfathomable changes to human civilisation, basically machines being smarter than people.