CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 12/4/2016
Thursday, December 8 at 7PM, ARTBOOK @ Hauser Wirth & Schimmel presents the LA extended release of Lynne Tillman’s The Complete Madame Realism and Other Stories, published by Semiotext(e). Following an introduction by Semiotext(e) co-editor Chris Kraus, Tillman will read from the essay collection and Colm Tóibín will read from his novel Nora Webster. Book signing to follow.
The Complete Madame Realism and Other Stories gathers in one volume all of Lynne Tillman’s groundbreaking Madame Realism fiction/essays, writing on culture and places, monuments, artworks, iconic TV shows, and received ideas. These record the subtle, ironic, and wry observations of the playful but stern “Madame Realism.”
Through her use of a fictional character, Tillman devised a new genre of writing that melded fiction and theory, sensation, and critical thought, disseminating her third-person art writer’s observations in such magazines as Art in America and in a variety of art exhibition catalogs and artist books. Two decades after the original publication of some of these stories in the Madame Realism Complex, her approach to investigation through embodied thought has been wholly absorbed by a new generation of artists and writers. Provocative and wholly pleasurable, Tillman’s writings dissects the mundane with alarming precision. As Lydia Davis wrote of it, “Our assumptions shift. The every day becomes strange, paradox is embraced, and the unexpected is always around the corner.”
The Complete Madame Realism and Other Stories also includes all of the Paige Turner novelllas, Tillman’s character, a quixotic author whose investigation of the language of love overshoots any actual experience of it. There are also six other stories and essays, never before collected, that address figures such as David Wojnarowicz and Cindy Sherman.
LYNNE TILLMAN is the author of five novels, four collections of short stories, two collections of essays and two other nonfiction books. She collaborates often with artists and writes regularly on culture, and her fiction is anthologized widely. Her novel No Lease on Life and her second essay collection What Would Lynne Tillman Do? were nominated, respectively, for a National Book Critics Circle Award in Fiction (1998) and in Criticism (2014). She is Professor and Writer-in-Residence in the Department of English at the University at Albany, a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship as well as an Arts Writers grant from the Warhol Foundation/Creative Capital (2015).
COLM TÓIBÍN is a fiction and non-fiction author and has published more than twenty books, including the novels The South, The Master, Brooklyn, The Testament of Mary (short-listed for the Man Booker Prize), and most recently, Nora Webster, named a New York Times Notable Book of 2014. His non-fiction books include Homage to Barcelona, Lady Gregory’s Toothbrush, and New Ways to Kill Your Mother: Writers and their Families. Tóibín’s many literary awards and honors include the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award in 2009 and the Irish PEN Award in 2011. Tóibín writes frequently for The New York Review of Books and is a professor of the Humanities at Columbia University. He was a fellow at the Cullman Center in 2000-2001.
CHRIS KRAUS is a writer and critic whose books include I Love Dick, Where Art Belongs and Summer of Hate. She is a co-editor of Semiotexte, with Hedi El Kholti and Sylvere Lotringer. A 2016 Guggenheim Fellow, she teaches writing at European Graduate School.
Best known for its introduction of French theory to American readers, SEMIOTEXT(E) has been one of America’s most influential independent presses since its inception more than three decades ago. Publishing works of theory, fiction, madness, economics, satire, sexuality, science fiction, activism and confession, Semiotext(e)’s highly curated list has famously melded high and low forms of cultural expression into a nuanced and polemical vision of the present. Semiotext(e) is coedited by Sylvère Lotringer, Chris Kraus, and Hedi El Kholti.