The Unacknowledged Death of Seattle’s Most Famous Racist Ceramicist

Comments

2

What I remember of Krafft was the clarity of the impression of irony I got from his work. You can see that in the photo above, the daintiness and propriety, of the Thompson sub machine gun and WWII era hand grenade done in folky Delft. It’s a jarring juxtaposition and a fascinating one. Iconic, historic images of violence portrayed in a medium and style of staid and delicate propriety. When I first learned of his fascist leanings, I was just sad and disappointed. Then I heard a discussion on KUOW that was pretty interesting. They were discussing if anyone could discern fascist ideas in Krafft’s work, or do the works stand alone in their deliberate irony? That’s the problem with cancellation, of course. It seems inevitable that anyone saying anything worth paying attention to has some bubbling trouble about them.

3

Yep. The irony is there whether or not he is a white supremacist.

4

*was

5

I don't want to dismiss white supremacy too easily, but I think it's possible for two things to be simultaneously true:
1. That his work was ironic at that time
2. That something broke in his brain with age

6

those are two
REMARKABLE
pieces of China.

whoa.

7

This podcast acknowledged his death.

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/nazi-artist-charles-krafft-is-dead/id1489888555?i=1000477882885

8

covid?

9

Art for art’s sake.

10

@2 "I heard a discussion on KUOW that was pretty interesting. They were discussing if anyone could discern fascist ideas in Krafft’s work, or do the works stand alone in their deliberate irony?"

I'd like to think some mega-donor to KUOW telephoned Bill Radke during a station identification break and purred, "See if you can salvage any value from my Krafft collekkktion; stir up the pot, if you will. Ha ha! Toodles radio man!"

11

I met Krafft around 2010 at the Esoteric Book Conference. He was sitting with Adam Parfrey and we talked about industrial music. We maintained a correspondence for a few years until it became apparent he was a full-day nazi. I was in my early 20s and in retrospect I think it's safe to assume he was trying to groom me for his fascist club (as a longtime anti fascist this never would have worked, but it's still creepy).

I don't know what, if anything, changed with him over the years and it's an overall bad situation. I think that searching for explanations for a case like his often ignored the brute, base nature of racism. It can infect anyone. His art was great; he was not. Maybe he stared into the abyss too long? I'll never know but I'm not sure the world is worse off without him. Also: I don't know if the Esoteric Book Conference still happens but there were definitely fascists there at some really dodgy distros. If the organizers of that event aren't aware of this then they must be real fuckin' dense

Anyway that's my two cents. Thanks to the stranger for their reporting on this and thanks to Mr. Mudede for his always intriguing insights.

12

Maybe in search for self enlightenment the hidden racist got re-ignited. Witnessing this in real time.

13

"How in the world did this former hippy and follower of higher Indian wisdom become the person convincingly described as a white nationalist by Jen Graves and the arts community?"

How about, "When a man tells you who he is, believe him the first time"?

I think this story tells us something about the unreliability of Mr. Mudede's judgment.

You've never heard of a great artist who turned out first rate art who subscribed to despicable philosophies? Ezra Pound, for instance, a giant among poets & critics was a fascist collaborator in Italy during World War II. They are legion.

14

Depending on the duration and location of the tumor(s), gioblastoma can produce paranoia, disinhibition, anxiety, "emotional functioning, interpersonal relationships, neurocognitive functioning" and insight into one's own level of (dys)function.

Reference: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4467748/

He clearly ended his life as a Nazi, plain and simple.

Did he start out that way, only to be outed by his own increasing dis-inhibition?

Did he start as someone with a fascination or fetish for the iconography, and then take up the philosophy as his judgement and faculties disintegrated?

Nobody interviewed in the article is equipped to say.

That said, it's crucial to understand that no level of artistic sophistication (high or low) nor of skill or craft, confers automatic protection against Fascist (or any other) ideology.