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Art Books

Circling the Square: Maidan and Cultural Insurgency in Ukraine

Circling the Square: Maidan and Cultural Insurgency in Ukraine—an oversize newsprint publishedby the New York-based Cicada Press—seems to be a risky endeavor: most of its texts were written and originally published in March, when the Ukrainian revolution could be perceived

Bertolt Brecht

Philip Glahn informs us at the very start of this scholarly, readable volume that he has no intention of writing one more candid exposé of Bertolt Brecht, the German playwright, poet, and intellectual who is conceivably the most influential theorist-practitioner of politically engaged art of the past century.

Walker Evans: The Magazine Work

One of the pivotal figures of 20th-century photography, Walker Evans’s austere and formally precise images of the American vernacular helped define a stylistic approach to photography that continues to resonate with contemporary artists.

Undermining: A Wild Ride Through Land Use, Politics, and Art in the Changing West

It is not insignificant that Lucy Lippard’s latest book begins with the word “I.” While it is structurally one of the simplest words in the English language, with Lippard’s voice it speaks beyond monosyllabic clarity and points to the radicality at the heart of her criticism, demonstrating the reformist potential of Undermining in the process.

Both Visible and Invisible, Object and Interface:
Site proposition and completion in painting, sculpture, and participation

In the early 1990s at a College Art Association panel, the veteran painter Rackstraw Downes presented “Nature and Art Are Physical,” a paper reflecting on the landscape artist. The essay has become the title of a collection of his writings on art from 1967 to 2008 and is an appropriate statement for the aesthetic ideology of Downes’s own paintings.

Walter Benjamin: Recent Writings

The profession of almost every man, even that of the artist, begins with hypocrisy, ” Nietzsche writes, “with an imitation from without, with a copying of what is most effective.” When I first started graduate school in philosophy, in 1990, I arrived with a headful of Nietzsche and Russell and Quine and Davidson, only to find, to my embarrassment and confusion, that all of the cool kids were reading this fellow I’d never even heard of, Walter Benjamin. Naturally, I copied them.


The Brooklyn Rail

JUL-AUG 2014

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