»People from my generation always thought that we’d have better lives than our parents, and now we are realising that it’s possible that we won’t.« [says critic/curator Timotheus Vermeulen.] Strangely however, when such generational disappointment could easily lead to an utterly postmodern response of »fuck it, we’ll fail anyhow,« the metamodern sensibility is quite the opposite. Out of loss in art, politics, bottom lines or otherwise, has come a resurgent hopefulness […W]e are ironic, but want to love; we are earnest, but know earnestness may never get us anywhere.
More on the idea of »metamodernism« at Timotheus Vermeulen’s blog Notes on Metamodernism.
c.f. »quirky«, a sensibility James Macdowell tied to the Metamodern in an essay on said blog quite a few months ago (my bad, I only noticed it today), its tone being »an oscillation between sincerity and irony, enthusiasm and detachment, naïveté and knowingness.«