You have no items in your shopping cart.
Meet Walter Benjamin, the prolific 20th century German cultural theorist who started it all with his critical essay of 1936. Raised in Berlin between wars, Benjamin came of age during the growing embroilments of World War II. His theories encompass a combination of socio-political cogency and intensely critical visual analyses. The shifts in Benjamin’s academic success coupled with his mysterious death contribute to the lore of this once-estranged intellectual. We are inspired by and humbly take our name from the title of Benjamin’s groundbreaking essay, “The Work of Art In The Age of Mechanical Reproduction (1936).” In this piece, Benjamin critiques the methods and motivations of image reproduction at the advent of the Industrial Revolution (the inception of commercial filmmaking and mass print media). He mourns the loss of “the aura,” the moment of awe seizing the first-time beholder of a singular work of art. Benjamin argues that forces of commercialization have subject “the aura” to a perverse transmutation of value, resulting in a cheapened “cult value.” He concludes with the assertion that reproduction techniques could someday work in favor of the artists, for purposes both political and philosophical. We interpret this writing as the opening of a crucial and contemporary conversation about the marriage of art and industry. Under the auspices of Walter Benjamin, we are determined to prove the possibility of increased artistic accessibility across cultural forms without the sacrifice of value.