DATE 3/29/2018

'Ice Cream Headaches' launch event at Pilgrim Surf

DATE 3/16/2018

What is 'The Sausage of the Future'?

DATE 3/15/2018

The enigmatic, unreadable writings of Mirtha Dermisache

DATE 3/14/2018

Joyce J. Scott: "I skirt the borders between comedy, pathos, delight, and horror"

DATE 3/13/2018

Bringing boundless joy: Anna Zemánková

DATE 3/12/2018

Weird and beautiful: Anna Zemánková

DATE 3/11/2018

Singular, odd and inspiring: Danh Vo: Take My Breath Away

DATE 3/10/2018

Mojos, mandalas and divining tools: Chris Martin

DATE 3/10/2018

Subversive, even scandalous: Francis Picabia: Littérature

DATE 3/9/2018

Provocateurs of the human body in 'Klimt and Schiele: Drawings'

DATE 3/8/2018

Celebrate International Women's Day… 1975 to now!

DATE 3/7/2018

Celebrate Women's History Month with Marina Abramovic's rendition of 'The Ugly Duckling'

DATE 3/6/2018

René Magritte: The Revealing Image

DATE 3/6/2018

Watch the Video Trailer for "Johnny Cash at Folsom and San Quentin: Photographs by Jim Marshall"

DATE 3/5/2018

Private entertainments or public show? Frida Kahlo: Her Photos

DATE 3/5/2018

SOM to launch 'The Future of Public Space' at the Strand

DATE 3/5/2018

Chris Martin book launch at Spoonbill Studio

DATE 3/4/2018

Frida Kahlo's life in photographs

DATE 3/2/2018

Sheila Hicks: Knotting, wrapping, folding, twisting and stacking wool, linen, cotton and more

DATE 3/2/2018

The warp and weft of poetics in 'Sheila Hicks: Lifelines'

DATE 3/1/2018

Recommended Reading: Women's History Month

DATE 3/1/2018

Celebrate Women's History with brand new release, 'Sheila Hicks: Lifelines'

DATE 2/28/2018

In 'Ellen Gallagher: Accidental Records' radical aesthetic possibilities emerge from seismic cracks in the surface of things

DATE 2/28/2018

Robert Storr and Francesca Pietropaolo in conversation about 'Interviews on Art' at 192 Books

DATE 2/28/2018

Amy Sillman book event and 'Scarlet Street' screening at Metrograph

DATE 2/28/2018

'Entanglements: Plans and Accidents' at the Artbook @ MoMA PS1 Book Space

DATE 2/27/2018

Jack Whitten and the rock-bottom meaning of universality

DATE 2/27/2018

Brian Blomerth's 'XAK'S WAX' zine launch at MoMA PS1 Book Space

DATE 2/26/2018

Black History as told through 'Black Dolls'

DATE 2/25/2018

Unsentimental Wonder: Hilton Als on Alice Neel

DATE 2/24/2018

Boom boxes, break dancing and the Salsa King: Black History from Jamel Shabazz

DATE 2/23/2018

The meaning of color, both racial and painterly

DATE 2/23/2018

Readings in Criticism with 'unbag' at the MoMA PS1 Book Space

DATE 2/22/2018

Swept up by a feeling of awe: Shinique Smith in 'Four Generations'

DATE 2/20/2018

Celebrate 60 years of Gerald Holtom's Peace Symbol with 'Jim Marshall: Peace'

DATE 2/20/2018

Four Generations of 'Solidary & Solitary' work by artists of African descent

DATE 2/19/2018

Symbols that call us into being: 'Beyond Mammy, Jezebel & Sapphire'

DATE 2/19/2018

Reclaiming Images of Black Women in 'Beyond Mammy, Jezebel & Sapphire'

DATE 2/17/2018

Celebrate Black History with Mark Bradford

DATE 2/16/2018

Christian Wassmann book launch at Spoonbill Studio

DATE 2/16/2018

Dive Deeper into Black History with Recently Discovered African Studio Photographer Sory Sanlé

DATE 2/15/2018

Betye Saar: Uneasy Dancer

DATE 2/14/2018

Sweets for the Sweet: Valentine's Reading, 2018

DATE 2/14/2018

Ah, love… or at least seduction!

DATE 2/13/2018

Carolee Schneemann launch event at the MoMA PS1 Book Space

DATE 2/12/2018

Celebrate Black History with 'Dancehall'

DATE 2/11/2018

Jean-Michel Basquiat: Words Are All We Have

DATE 2/10/2018

Join ARTBOOK | D.A.P. at the 2018 ARLIS National Conference in New York!

DATE 2/10/2018

Celebrate Black History with Jacob Lawrence's Migration Series

DATE 2/9/2018

Black History told through the Collected Works of Gordon Parks

DATE 2/8/2018

Gordon Parks: A Harlem Family



Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke

New York-based poet Kenneth Goldsmith’s contribution to the Documenta Notebooks series is a letter to Bettina Funcke, the series’ Head of Publications. In the following excerpt from this letter, Goldsmith describes his work with “Uncreative Writing,” his curating of Ubuweb and the new skill sets needed for writing in the digital age.

I teach Uncreative Writing in an English department at an Ivy League University: I teach students to appropriate, plagiarize, patch-write, and steal. If they show a trace of “creativity,” they are demoted. For a final project, I make them break the most sacred taboo in academia: they must buy a term paper from an online paper mill and present it to me as their own. What I do in the classroom is illegal and unlawful; some might even call it immoral. But the students—and even the parents of the students who have sat in on classes—love it. Finally, what they’ve surreptitiously been doing for years is brought out into the light of day and framed in terms of responsibility rather than reckless “theft.” At the end of the day, I don’t expect them to forever write this way. Instead, they’ve got another tool in their writing toolbox. Unlike the reaction to Day or UbuWeb, students understand that such gestures have many dimensions, that by writing this way, they can also continue to write in more conventional ways. It’s not either/or. But this is typical of their generation: the Internet is just another tool, like oil paint and ceramics. I admire their fluidity and their nonhierarchical approach to media.

And still, what would a nonexpressive poetry look like? A poetry of intellect rather than emotion? One in which the substitutions at the heart of metaphor and image were replaced by the direct presentation of language itself, with “spontaneous overflow” supplanted by meticulous procedure and exhaustively logical process? In which the self-regard of the poet’s ego were no longer whether it could have been done better (the question of the workshop), but whether it could conceivably have been done otherwise. (Craig Dworkin, “Introduction to The UbuWeb Anthology of Conceptual Writing,”, accessed February 9, 2010.)

Look. I know that UbuWeb is not very good. In terms of films, the selection is random and the quality is often poor. The accompanying text can be shoddy, mostly poached from whatever is available around the Net. So are the films: they are mostly grabbed from private, closed file-sharing communities and made available to the public, hence the often lousy quality. It could be done much better. Yet, in terms of how we’ve gone about building the archive, if we had to ask for permission, we wouldn’t exist. Because we have no money, we don’t ask permission. Asking permission always involves paperwork and negotiations, lawyers, and bank accounts. Yuck. But by doing things the wrong way, we’ve been able to pretty much overnight build an archive that’s accessible to the public free of charge.

In 1969, the Conceptual artist Douglas Huebler wrote, “The world is full of objects, more or less interesting: I do not wish to add any more.” I’ve come to embrace Huebler’s ideas, thought it might be retooled as, “The world is full of texts, more or less interesting; I do not wish to add any more.” It seems an appropriate response to a new condition in writing today: faced with an unprecedented amount of available text, the problem is not needing to write more of it; instead, we must learn to negotiate the vast quantity that exists. I’ve transformed myself from a writer into an information manager, adept at the skills of replicating, organizing, mirroring, archiving, hoarding, storing, reprinting, bootlegging, plundering, and transferring. I’ve needed to acquire a whole new skill set: I’ve become a master typist, an exacting cut-and-paster, and an OCR demon. There’s nothing I love more than transcription; I find few things more satisfying than collation.

Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke
Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke
Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke
Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke
Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke
Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke
Documenta Notebooks: Kenneth Goldsmith, Letter to Bettina Funcke

Kenneth Goldsmith: Letter to Bettina Funcke

Kenneth Goldsmith: Letter to Bettina Funcke

Pbk, 4 x 5.75 in. / 32 pgs / 1 color.

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