Issue 16 banner

Issue #16: Situation

The essays in this issue consider various ways we–our problems and works–emerge from and in our situation and the ways this fact can be figured in our poems and our paintings, and in our responses to them.

Figure 1

Don’t Let Me Be Universal
Or, the Postwar American Poem

By (Southern Methodist University)

She explains that much liver damage is drug-induced because the liver functions as a chemical purifier, stripping the blood of toxins by splitting poisons into less destructive chemical building blocks. The resulting toxins are excreted while the cleansed blood recirculates. When an overwhelmed liver fails to break down the blood’s contaminants (even beneficial ones, such as painkillers), the pollutants poison the liver cells instead.

Cronan cover

Against Affective Formalism: Matisse, Bergson, Modernism

By (National Gallery of Art), (The Ohio State University), (Emory University), (University of Illinois, Chicago), (Case Western Reserve University) and (Emory University)

Let me be clear, the problems I raise do not stem from a dissatisfaction with the way October authors repeat a kind of party line. In fact, I envy the unity and consistency of the resolve and of course their massive impact on the discipline (what is there, politically speaking, besides anti-hierarchy in the humanities?). My point is that the basic set of claims shared by many of these authors is mistaken.

Figure 16
Clement Greenberg and Friedel Dzubas
Ithaca, New York, 1970
Courtesy, Friedel Dzubas Estate Archives

Friedel Dzubas

Pictures from all stages of Dzubas’s art since the 40’s will in time to come thrust themselves increasingly into attention: enough of them to establish him once and for all where he belongs, which is on the heights.

Fig. 1.  Anselm Kiefer, Nigredo (1984; Philadelphia Museum of Art)

Finding Our Bearings with Art

By (Emory University)

I propose bearing as a marker of an artwork’s purposive comportment in and toward the world whose various relations and dimensions the work engages and discloses. I have chosen this term because at least five of its senses apply to artworks as I understand them. [1] Artworks have a manner of comportment, a bearing, e.g. bold, reflective, ironic, etc. [2] They are generative (in the sense of ‘bear fruit’) in that they provide disclosures. [3] They are purposively oriented and thus have bearings, principally toward an addressee, but also toward some determinate end, e.g. to be beautiful, to please, to rework culture, to witness suffering, etc. [4] Works of art also make use of the very world that they disclose, which leads me to say that artworks bear, in the sense of carry, extant possibilities, transforming them until they coalesce into a phenomenon that is bindingly eloquent. [5] Finally, artworks also bear (or fail to bear), in the sense of endure, the world they absorb in order to disclose whatever possibilities they are able to bear.

Foucault

On Problematization
Elaborations on a Theme in “Late Foucault”

Interpretations of the idea of problematization cut to the heart of different ways of engaging with Foucault’s ideas. It seems at first sight to provide a refined model of critical practice. On closer inspection, it turns out to be better interpreted as a contribution to a more descriptive understanding of the tasks of social inquiry.

Sartoris, 1963
Oil on canvas
90 x 61 in (228.6 x 158 cm)
Courtesy of Loretta Howard Gallery

Greenberg on Dzubas

It’s important to understand that for the greater part of thirty years, Greenberg believed in this artist. But by 1977, his claim was that Dzubas had yet to construct a solid foundation for his future artistic development; that he had failed to “follow up on his achievements and achievedness”; that, instead, he had “let it all lie scattered.”

nonsite.org is an online, open access, peer-reviewed quarterly journal of scholarship in the arts and humanities.
nonsite.org is affiliated with Emory College of Arts and Sciences.
© 2017 all rights reserved. ISSN 2164-1668