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2014/15 Winter Reading List: Literary Revisitations

Most of us have, at least once, had the strange sensation of opening a great text or otherwise reputable book only to find it impenetrable and unprofitable––sometimes flatly unreadable. We may also have had the more pleasant sensation of picking that same book up again, sometimes years later, to find that it has changed somehow: the book really is great. This reading list is devoted to the sensation of revisiting a book to find it transformed.

In Conversation

ALANNA HEISS with David Carrier and Joachim Pissarro, with the assistance of Gaby Collins-Fernandez

Alanna Heiss is hailed as a founder of what we know as the “alternative space movement,” and one of the most important centers for contemporary art in the country.

Rethinking Duchamp

Marcel Duchamp: La Peinture, Meme, the current exhibition at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, is a refreshing new look at Duchamp with many surprises. The title is fittingly a double entendre.

In Conversation

ROBERT GOBER with Jarrett Earnest

Robert Gober entered the New York art world in 1985 with an exhibition of polysemic sinks that effortlessly slipped between torsos, faces, tombstones, ghosts, and glory holes—animated by the gentle quivering of their handmade surfaces.

In Conversation

ALEXANDER ROSS with Will Corwin

Alexander Ross’s paintings exist in the hazy space between photorealism and abstraction. Recent Terrestrials at David Nolan Gallery (October 30 – December 6, 2014) pushed Ross’s practice even further, exploring landscape and portraiture without leaving the alternate dimension his earlier work inhabited.

Stealing Time: Emma Bee Bernstein

The daughter of artist Susan Bee and poet Charles Bernstein and sister of artist and writer Felix Bernstein, Emma Bee Bernstein, was a beautiful, brilliant, and prolific third-generation artist whose mysterious suicide at 23 in the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice, Italy, in 2008 shocked and saddened her friends and family and the New York art world.

Casa Wabi

Located on the outskirts of Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca, Casa Wabi is a non-profit organization offering residencies and opportunities for long-term projects for international and local artists.

No Room for Artists

Art and capital have a long and complicated history, but rarely do they combine so problematically as in the figure of Aby Rosen. In 2005, the controversial art collector and co-founder of RFR Holdings told the New York Times that life is about “melting art and commerce all together.”

Troubled Sleep, Sugar High

I’m not the first to comment on the selfie-mania that accompanied last summer’s most popular New York art-world event, Kara Walker’s A Subtlety.

In Conversation

JUSTIN VIVIAN BOND with Jarrett Earnest

Justin Vivian Bond is a writer and singer who became famous in the 1990s as Kiki DuRane, half of the cabaret duo Kiki and Herb.


The Brooklyn Rail

DEC 14-JAN 15

All Issues