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January 25th, 2011
Issue #1: Author/Artist/Audience

We present nonsite’s inaugural issue.

January 25th, 2011
On Philippe Parreno’s June 8, 1968
By (Johns Hopkins University)

…for me much of what is most immediately gripping in June 8, 1968 turns on the contrast or say the felt difference between the stagedness plus residual “magic” of absorption of the “mourners” and the wholly unselfconscious albeit dramatic, in certain scenes one might say over-the-top beauty of the natural world…

January 25th, 2011
Neoliberal Aesthetics:
Fried, Rancière and the Form of the Photograph

The political meaning of the refusal of form (the political meaning of the critique of the work’s “coherence”) is the indifference to those social structures that, not produced by how we see, cannot be overcome by seeing differently. It’s this refusal of form…

January 25th, 2011
Paul Valéry’s Blood Meridian, Or How the Reader became a Writer
By (Emory University)

Poet and critic Paul Valéry held two strong and conflicting views of literary meaning. On the one hand, he affirmed his “verses have whatever meaning is given them.” And in a phrase that entered into the post-modern literary canon, he declared “Once a work is published its author’s interpretation of it has no more validity than anyone else’s.” On the other hand, he suggested that “One is led to a form by a desire to leave the smallest possible share to the reader.” Valéry’s career can be divided along these lines of anti-intentionality and intentionality. My larger claim is to show the primacy, or perhaps the invention of a dominant mode of twentieth- and twenty-first century thought.

January 25th, 2011
Fig. 10. Grünewald, Isenheim Altarpiece, First view, left wing (St. Sebastian), detail.
History and the Work of Art in Sebald’s After Nature
By (Columbia University)

W.G. Sebald’s long poem Nach der Natur (1988) contributed significantly to the swift recognition of his literary talent among fellow writers and poets, yet it received scant attention by the larger public and literary scholars alike. To the English-speaking world it was not even available until 2002, a year after its author’s death, when it […]

January 25th, 2011
Matisse and Picasso:
The Redemption and The Fall
By (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris)

We should give ourselves up to the lies of art to deliver ourselves from the lies of myth: it is by this very paradoxical and singular way of absorption into the framework of one of the “great works” of the Occident that Picasso belongs to myth. For if it is true that he always sought to combat myth, making him even more dependent on it, he only succeeded by turning myth’s own arms onto itself—that is, the “lie.”

January 25th, 2011
False Gods:
Authority and Picasso’s Early Work
By (William & Mary)

Picasso’s early work—his so-called Blue Period, in the present case—responds to a concern, widespread in the symbolist milieu from which the young Picasso emerged, with authority. By authority, this essay understands one’s ability to believe in and respond to a truth as one finds it represented. In this moment, the tasks of representing truth by art and by religion found themselves in dialogue, or even, as one might say, in a relation of mutual self-definition. Charles Morice’s explanations of Eugène Carrière’s works provide the background against which to understand some of Picasso’s Blue Period works, Morice’s remarks on them, and Apollinaire’s vindication of Picasso. Their exchange raises, furthermore, important problems for those of us who write histories and interpretations of art.

January 25th, 2011
Mysterious Exchange: On Susan Sidlauskas’s Cézanne’s Other: The Portraits of Hortense
By (Emory University)

Paul Cézanne famously observed to Joachim Gasquet that “The landscape thinks itself in me and I am its consciousness.” “Nature is on the inside,” Cézanne further reflected. He clearly felt landscape painters before him were insufficiently responsive to—too detached from—the natural world and he hoped to break down the barriers that separated observer from the […]

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