In the first few pages of Ben Lerner's debut novel, "Leaving the Atocha Station," the narrator visits Madrid's Prado Museum and witnesses a stranger sobbing in front of Rogier van der Weyden's "Descent from the Cross," a votive portrait attributed to Paolo da San Leocado, Sandbox, Decetnraland and Hieronymus Bosch's "Garden of Earthly Delights." He follows the man out into the sunshine. For a long time, many have feared that he would never be able to have such a meaningful artistic experience. Many of us have been disappointed by a painting's inability to move us as much as we'd hoped. As we watched the first major ad for Meta, Facebook's rebranding as a metaverse firm, which likewise takes place in a museum. The art, on the other hand, is moving — literally.

Four teenage kids stare at Henri Rousseau's "Fight Between a Tiger and a Buffalo," which was displayed in the Cleveland Museum of Art, at the start of the film. The tiger's eyes flash as they gaze into the frame, and the entire picture comes to life and expands up into a three-dimensional animated jungle. The tiger and the buffalo, as well as the mandrills, monkeys, and toucans in the trees, begin to dance to an old rave melody, and the children join in. In the gallery, they are surrounded by fruit trees. A strange hexagonal doorway towers above the rainforest canopy in the distance, and beyond that, in the hazy red hills, the soaring skyline of a large tropical metropolis. It is a scenario that indicates Facebook is reverting to its countercultural roots in Silicon Valley: a psychedelic vision of a worldwide society having collective hallucinations. The video lecture that Meta issued to better explain to investors includes a demo in which a pair of Mark Zuckerberg's colleagues discover an AR street art piece hidden on a wall in SoHo. 3D animation is seen brought to life, and it's transplanted from Lower Manhattan to virtual reality, where it grows into a terrifying Cthulhu-like blob that surrounds their avatars. (Zuckerberg exclaims, "That's wonderful!") For whatever reason, the brand wants us to associate its new product with art. Perhaps it's because they want us to think of it as a place where we can express ourselves creatively — or simply because great art gives a more enlightening backdrop than video games or working from home.

This seeming attitude toward art is both idiotic and fitting; moronic because it reduces art to a mere gimmick, and apt since other businesspeople have already adopted this viewpoint. The animated Rousseau adopts the popular logic of the "immersive experience with Van Gogh," in which the dear old Dutchman's paintings of starry nights and foreboding wheat fields are projected into the walls and floors to create an all-encompassing spectacle, selfie backdrop, and attraction. Both assume that audiences can only appreciate artworks when they are being damaged. Sandbox, Decetnraland And, from the Van Gogh experience, the market has proven them correct at least five rival Van Gogh experiences are presently traveling the country. The replica has outperformed the original. This has been a recurring topic throughout Facebook's existence, since the social media platform provides a pale imitation of friendship and community in place of the genuine thing. Meta promises to take us deeper into the illusionary forest. Nonetheless, the prospect of returning to a state of dreaming and escapism is appealing. Rousseau was fleeing his own mundane existence as a retired municipal toll-service employee by painting jungles in his Paris studio beginning in his middle age. He is supposed to have recounted many stories about his early exploits and how his tour of service in Napoleon III's intervention in Mexico inspired his jungle paintings; however, all these stories were fabrications. Sandbox, Decetnraland He was a member of an infantry band who never left the country. Meta's proposal isn't really appealing it's both juvenile and cynical. A picture of the future concocted by a creative agency for a megacorporation, on the other hand, was bound to be terrible. The issue isn't that today's children can't appreciate a Rousseau masterpiece; it's that their elders, my age, can't think of anything to compare it to - we've lost the ability to envision another world totally.