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  1. #1
    Senior Member David Halitsky's Avatar
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    Default What is the Greek word for "kitsch"?

    The word "kitsch" is not originally an English word:

    **********
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kitsch

    "Kitsch (/ˈkɪtʃ/; loanword from German) is a low-brow style of mass-produced art or design using popular or cultural icons. Kitsch generally includes unsubstantial or gaudy works or decoration, or works that are calculated to have popular appeal.

    The concept of kitsch is applied to artwork that was a response to the 19th-century art with aesthetics that convey exaggerated sentimentality and melodrama."
    ***************

    Question 1:

    Is there a Greek word for "kitsch", or do Greek cultural critics and commentators also use the word "kitsch"?

    Question 2:

    Would you consider this clip "kitsch" or not?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_9HXYTHC_qY

    Question 3:

    Would most native Greeks consider the clip "kitsch" or not?

    Question 4:

    Would Μάνος Χατζιδάκις hate this clip?
    Last edited by David Halitsky; 02-14-2015 at 10:13 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member David Halitsky's Avatar
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    IMPORTANT - please note.

    In the first post in this thread, I linked to the wrong youtube clip

    THIS is the clip I meant to link to:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_9HXYTHC_qY

    Questions 2-4 make sense in relation to THIS CLIP. They don't make any sense in relation to the original clip which I posted.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Tahira's Avatar
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    Unfortunatelly I cannot open the link.

    For the german "Kitsch" I found the greek: κακογουστιά (or even kits); But I do not know if the greek word fits the meaning.

  4. #4
    Ange ou Demon Amethystos's Avatar
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    Answering questions.

    1. We use the same word having the meaning of "bad aesthetical taste". We even extend it to refer to people having bad taste. "Είναι κιτς αυτός" "He is kitsch"
    (Like if there is a barrel of "kitsch" and he recently jumped in ..... )

    2.& 3. NO (and I don't believe many Greeks find this clip kitsch)

    4. Who knows? But what's the thing that this clip has, which made you relate it with the word "kitsch"? I see no relation of any kind.
    "Gilgamesh, where are you hurrying to?
    You will never find that life for which you are looking.
    When the gods created man they allotted to him death,
    but life they retained in their own keeping"

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    David Halitsky (02-15-2015)

  6. #5
    Senior Member David Halitsky's Avatar
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    Actually, Amethystos, when I first saw the clip, I really liked it and didn't see anything "kitsch" about it at all. I thought it was really good.

    But then I started to worry that maybe I thought well of the clip because I have an "over-sentimental" view of Greece - you know - guys who just "happen" to be sitting around on ships and docks drinking and singing and playing bouzouki and dancing.

    So I got worried and I figured I'd better check with someone like you or Duffy what you think about the clip - whether you found it "over-romantic" and "over-sentimental". (Because if something is over-romantic or over-sentimental, it almost always IS "kitsch".)

    Finally, regarding Χατζιδάκις. I wish I had never found out that Χατζιδάκις hated the whole movie "Never on Sunday" because he thought ir presented an "over-sentimental", "over-romantic" view of Greece for the tourists.

    If I had never found that one thing out, I would never worry about whether clips like this were kitsch.

    But actually, one other thing just now occurred to me - maybe I should have realized that this clip was never intended to be seen outside of Greece, so it surely wasn't made with "tourists" in mind.
    Last edited by David Halitsky; 02-15-2015 at 09:29 AM.

  7. #6
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    This is not kitsch, this is fake and supposed that is good.

    Hadjidakis probably would laugh
    Αν υπάρχει κάτι που δεν χρειάζεται την πλειοψηφία για να είναι σωστό, αυτό είναι η ανθρώπινη συνείδηση.

  8. #7
    Senior Member David Halitsky's Avatar
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    Hi Duffy - to me, "fake" and "kitsch" are pretty much the same thing, but maybe that's just the way I use the words. (But in this regard, please note that to me "fake" is not the same as "forgery". A "forgery" can be really good - a "fake" cannot be really good.)

    Anyway, whether this clip is "fake" or "kitsch" or both, YOU clearly don't like it. ***

    So now the question is whether Amethystos agrees with you - that it's not "kitsch" but it is "fake".

    But if I know our friend Amethystos, he will simply post some comment like:

    "That's the wonderful thing about art - it can inspire different reactions in different people".

    And of course he'll put a happy face at the end of that comment.


    *** But I do have to ask you one other question, Duffy - do you dislike this clip just because it's Τερζής? I remember once you wrote something in a post about how you laugh when you see Τερζής crying when he sings a sad song ...

  9. #8
    Ange ou Demon Amethystos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Halitsky View Post
    to me, "fake" and "kitsch" are pretty much the same thing,
    It's not the same for me.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Halitsky View Post
    Anyway, whether this clip is "fake" or "kitsch" or both, YOU clearly don't like it. ***

    So now the question is whether Amethystos agrees with you - that it's not "kitsch" but it is "fake".

    But if I know our friend Amethystos, he will simply post some comment like:

    "That's the wonderful thing about art - it can inspire different reactions in different people".

    And of course he'll put a happy face at the end of that comment.


    But just for answering your question, the vid in question serves it's purpose to visualize a song without offending viewer's sentiment of "good taste".
    You can't expect much more from a low-budget production.

    If you wanna see what I call kitsch, here's a vid of Terzis singing a Hatzidakis' song.
    FOR ME this performance does not serve the song (music and poetry) and simultaneously hurts my vision.
    But as Ι can see the majority of Greeks and foreigners disagrees with me .....


    "Gilgamesh, where are you hurrying to?
    You will never find that life for which you are looking.
    When the gods created man they allotted to him death,
    but life they retained in their own keeping"

  10. #9
    Senior Member David Halitsky's Avatar
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    Yes, Amethystos! I see what you mean about that clip being "kitsch". And you should have warned Duffy not to watch it, because Terzis is crying here too. I am afraid if Duffy watches it, it will give him "apoplexy" ..!

    Anyway, we have that kind of "kitsch" song in US also:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/O_mein_Papa
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERv4dA5yt2Y

    (Tahira will appreciate this, I'm sure! Because the song is originally a German one.)

  11. #10
    Senior Member Tahira's Avatar
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    "Oh mein Papa" is a song of the generation of my grand parents. It's about a Clown (Artist); I never liked it.

    Actually I wouldn't use the word "Kitsch" in connection with a song. I would rather use it for things or pictures.

  12. #11
    Senior Member David Halitsky's Avatar
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    "things or pictures", Tahira?

    Do you mean things like these:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hummel_figurines

    Some people would sell their children to complete their collection - I could never understand it.

    But I know what you mean about "kitsch" usually meaning art that can be SEEN in two ir three dimensions ...

  13. #12
    Senior Member Tahira's Avatar
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    Oh! Things AND Pictures.

    The Hummel figurines are a wrong example. They have a high collectures value, depending on the time they were manufactured. They are hand made and I think they are really nice. They state ideal world and good old times.

    Kitsch is for me: a small Eiffel Tower, a small Statue of Liberty, small doggies and cats made of low quality plastics or ceramic; overstated figures... something like that.
    Or: a Picture with a roaring stag in the alps ... and this Picture is in an egypt living room thats Kitsch.

  14. #13
    Senior Member David Halitsky's Avatar
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    Yes - I know that many people think very highly of Hummels.

    And part of me can understand why, but the other side says "nahhhhhhhh!"

    I have the same problem with the US artist Norman Rockwell

    https://www.google.com/search?q=norm...&ved=0CJEBEIke

    He also captured "ideal world" and "good old times", like you said about Hummels. But where were the black or Hispanic people in his paintings? Apparently, they were somewhere else picking the vegetables and washing the dishes ...

    Same reason I'm suspicious of Hummels - I bet Ilse Koch had a great collection!!!!!

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