CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 7/19/2016
TUESDAY, JULY 19 at 7PM, 192 Books presents poet and cultural critic Wayne Koestenbaum reading from Notes on Glaze, his new essay collection from Cabinet Books. Book signing to follow.
ABOVE: Photo from the collection of Oliver Wasow.
In the spring of 2010, the Brooklyn-based quarterly magazine Cabinet invited poet and cultural critic Wayne Koestenbaum to begin writing a regular column. Entitled “Legend,” the column had a highly unusual premise; every three months, the editors of the magazine would ask Koestenbaum to write one or more extended captions for a single photograph with which they had provided him. Drawn from obscure vernacular, commercial, and scientific sources, all of the images were unfamiliar to the author. After 18 installments, Koestenbaum concluded his column in the winter of 2015. Featuring an introductory essay by the author, Notes on Glaze collects all the “Legend” columns, as well as their accompanying photographs.
It had been the intention of the editors to provide a venue for Koestenbaum’s aphoristic brilliance and his uncanny ability to pinpoint the unexpectedly telling detail in a given image, with each installment imagined as its own discrete encounter. But over time it became clear that there were profound correspondences between these individual exercises in sympathetic-critical observation and that Koestenbaum was quietly advancing an aesthetic position, one that suggests how to read cultural artifacts without foreclosing one’s own desire. Refusing the distancing language of critical disinterest, Koestenbaum’s columns always locate the author in intimate proximity to the subjects portrayed in the photographs and to the impossibly variegated cast of characters—ranging from Debbie Reynolds, Duccio, and Barbra Streisand to Hegel, Pee-wee Herman, and Emily Dickinson—who pass through these texts.
WAYNE KOESTENBAUM has published 17 books of poetry, criticism, and fiction, including The Pink Trance Notebooks, My 1980s & Other Essays, Hotel Theory, Best-Selling Jewish Porn Films, Andy Warhol, Humiliation, Jackie Under My Skin, and The Queen’s Throat (a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist). Koestenbaum’s first solo exhibition took place at White Columns gallery in New York in 2012; a survey of his paintings appeared at the University of Kentucky Art Museum in Fall 2015, and a solo exhibition of his paintings opened in March 2016 at 356 Mission in Los Angeles. He has given piano performances at The Kitchen, REDCAT Gallery, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art; and he has written the libretti for two operas—Michael Daugherty’s Jackie O, and Mohammed Fairouz’s Pierrot. Koestenbaum’s essays and poetry have appeared in The Best American Essays, The Best American Poetry, The New York Times, The New Yorker, London Review of Books, Artforum, The Paris Review, Harper’s, The Believer, Süddeutsche Zeitung, and many other periodicals and anthologies. He has taught at Yale (in the English department as well as in the School of Art’s painting department), and is a Distinguished Professor of English and French at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City.
Tuesday, July 19, 7PM
192 Tenth Avenue
New York, NY 10011
Phone: 212 255 4022
Hbk, 5.5 x 8 in. / 96 pgs / 14 color / 4 b&w.
$25.00 free shipping