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The Museum of Modern Art, New York

Clth, 9.5 x 12 in. / 256 pgs / 258 color.

Pub Date

D.A.P. Exclusive
Catalog: SPRING 2017 p. 53   

ISBN 9781633450233 TRADE
List Price: $60.00 CDN $79.00

Out of stock


Lawler’s strategy is seduction: her photographs delight. We are beguiled by the bench, wowed by the tureen, amused by the bedspread, and piqued by the wall label. She knows what we want... Humor helps. Having landed herself in a war zone between creating art and objectifying it, and between belonging to the art world and resenting it, Lawler capers in the crossfire. - Peter Schjeldahl, The New Yorker



Louise Lawler: Receptions

Edited with text by Roxana Marcoci. Text by Rhea Anastas, Mieke Bal, Douglas Crimp, Rosalyn Deutsche, Diedrich Diederichsen, David Platzker, Julian Stallabrass.

Louise Lawler: Receptions

A major exhibition on the 40-year career of the Pictures Generation pioneer, whose work engages conceptualism and institutional critique

Published in conjunction with the exhibition Louise Lawler: WHY PICTURES NOW, at The Museum of Modern Art, this volume charts the creative practice of one of the most influential artists working in the fields of picture-making and institutional critique. For the past 40 years, Louise Lawler has raised questions about art—about the circumstances that produce it, its circulation and the societal frameworks in which it appears. Many of the ideas that arise out of her work relate to theories of reception, the belief that the meaning of an artwork shifts and morphs depending on who looks at it and where it is seen. As the title of this publication suggests, many kinds of reception are possible.

In the eight essays in Receptions, renowned cultural thinkers unpack Lawler’s witty and provocative art, while a generous plate section comprehensively documents her images, installations and films. A selection of the ephemera she has designed, ranging from gallery announcements and posters to magazine covers and matchbooks, reflects her interest in how art reaches viewers beyond the museum and gallery system. The design of the book’s jacket is a typically ingenious Lawler production: when turned inside out, it becomes what she calls an “adjusted to fit” work—one of her photographs reformatted to fill the space available.

In our contemporary atmosphere of political theater, shocking wealth disparity and commodity culture, the insight, resistance and sly commentary of Lawler’s work feels as poignant and corrective as it has ever been. This book is an indispensable resource for anyone interested in late-20th- and early 21st-century art.

Louise Lawler (born 1947) is a New York artist whose work came to notoriety in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when she began taking pictures of other artists’ work displayed in collectors’ homes, museums, storage spaces and auction houses to question the value, meaning and use of art.

Roxana Marconi is Senior Curator in the Department of Photography at The Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Rhea Anastas is Associate Professor in the Department of Art at the University of California, Irvine.

Mieke Bal is Professor Emeritus in Literary Theory at the University of Amsterdam and Co-Founder of the Amsterdam School of Cultural Analysis.

Douglas Crimp was the Fanny Knapp Allen Professor of Art History at the University of Rochester.

Rosalyn Deutsche is Term Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art at Barnard College and Columbia University.

Diedrich Diederichsen is Professor of Theory, Practice and Communication of Contemporary Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna.

Julian Stallabrass is Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art at The Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London.

David Platzker is former Curator in the Department of Drawings and Prints at The Museum of Modern Art, New York

"Life after 1945 (Faces)," (2006/07) is reproduced from 'Louise Lawler: Receptions.'


The New Yorker

Peter Schjeldahl

Louise Lawler’s beguiling institutional critique . . . by far the most arresting artist of her kind.

The New Yorker

Andrea K Scott

The American photographer Louise Lawler may be the wittiest and most gimlet-eyed member of the Pictures Generation, revered for her matchless photographs of the secret life of art, as it cycles through gallery back rooms, collectors’ homes, and museum installations.

W Magazine

Andrew Russeth

With oblique humor and a zest for unusual methods, Lawler critiques the art system writ large.

The New York Times

Holland Cotter

One of the season’s brightest stars.

New York Magazine

A sweeping survey of piercing skepticism . . . [Lawler] has cast a gimlet eye on art-world systems, critiquing collectors, museums, and other art.

The New York Times

Roberta Smith

Louise Lawler is one of the great light-heavyweights of the 1980s Pictures Generation, an artist of stealth, wit and elegant understatement, adept at playing the art world against itself.

It's Liquid

[Lawler’s] careful attention to artistic contexts, modes of presentation, and viewers’ receptions generates witty, affective situations that contribute to institutional transformation.


Jennifer Krasinski

an elegant and engaging catalogue


Alex Kitnick

Lawler deploys photography as a way of staying close to and critical of the mainstream, simultaneously.

Louise Lawler: Receptions

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Temporarily out of stock pending additional inventory.



Taking on political theater, wealth disparity and commodity culture: Louise Lawler

Taking on political theater, wealth disparity and commodity culture: Louise Lawler

"(Andy Warhol and Other Artists) Tulip," 1982, is reproduced from Louise Lawler: Receptions, published to accompany the career retrospective opening today at The Museum of Modern Art. A key member of the Pictures Generation, Lawler has been a fearless practitioner of institutional critique for the past four decades, an artist whose work is about other artist's work—and the contexts in which said artwork can be found. Texts are by an all-star cast including Roxana Marcoci, Rhea Anastas, Mieke Bal, Douglas Crimp, Rosalyn Deutsche, Diedrich Diederichsen, David Platzker and Julian Stallabrass. continue to blog


Louise Lawler: Selected and Related


Walther König, Köln

ISBN: 9783960984511
USD $45.00
| CAN $62

Pub Date: 6/18/2019
Active | Out of stock

Louise Lawler: Receptions


The Museum of Modern Art, New York

ISBN: 9781633450233
USD $60.00
| CAN $79

Pub Date: 4/25/2017
Active | Out of stock