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Art Books

Mårten Lange’s Ghost Witness

The Swedish photographer Mårten Lange continues his investigation of nature, urbanism, and technology, focusing this time on China’s so-called “ghost cities,” the high-tech urban centers built so quickly that they were, at first, sparsely populated. The photobook is far from lifeless as Lange captures the delicate ways stereotypically sterile skyscrapers interact with their environment.

Ulises Carrión's Sonnet(s)

First published in 1972 as a typewritten staple-bound mimeograph book of 44 typographic versions of a Dante Gabriel Rossetti sonnet, the republication of this bookwork as a trade paperback with scholarly essays gives it a new afterlife. In it, the words themselves and their meaning become secondary to the typography itself.

François Halard’s 56 Days In Arles

This book is a tally of time in lockdown: a beautiful wordless diary in Polaroid glimpses by French photographer François Halard. The images feature corners of his abode, grand rooms, decorated with a bucolic-bourgeois sensibility and strewn with collections and curios, providing a kind of slanted self-portrait.

Rated RX: Sheree Rose with and after Bob Flanagan

Howard argues that Rose has been regarded as an afterthought in Flanagan’s work, while her own performance, photography, sculpture, and video goes ignored. The book positions itself as a corrective, compiling essays, poetry and photographs from Rose, interviews and scholarship on her work with Flanagan, and rare archival materials.

Hal Foster’s Brutal Aesthetics: Dubuffet, Bataille, Jorn, Paolozzi, Oldenburg

This eloquent book attempts to inaugurate a positive appraisal of what the author identifies as “positive barbarism.” However interesting the brutal aesthetics of sloppiness might be to a modern art historical exegesis, Brutal Aesthetics arrives at the grim doorstep of an offended world in the wake of endless uncouth brutalizations made by a mendacious macho American president.

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The Brooklyn Rail

MARCH 2021

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