CHEEYEON PARK | DATE 11/19/2020
Thursday, November 19 at 7PM EST, Artbook @ MoMA PS1 Bookstore and Princeton University Press invite you to a special online book launch, discussion and signing for Brutal Aesthetics: Dubuffet, Bataille, Jorn, Paolozzi, Oldenburg by Hal Foster. The noted art historian will be in conversation with Leah Dickerman, Director of Editorial and Content Strategy at the Museum of Modern Art. Please register here and click here to pre-order a signed copy of the book.
In Brutal Aesthetics, leading art historian Hal Foster explores how postwar artists and writers searched for a new foundation of culture after the massive devastation of World War II, the Holocaust and the atomic bomb. With a focus on the philosopher Georges Bataille, the painters Jean Dubuffet and Asger Jorn, and the sculptors Eduardo Paolozzi and Claes Oldenburg, Foster investigates a manifold move to strip art down, or to reveal it as already bare, in order to to develop a “brutal aesthetics” adequate to the destruction around them. What does Bataille seek in the prehistoric cave paintings of Lascaux? How does Dubuffet imagine an art brut, an art unscathed by culture? Why does Jorn populate his paintings with “human animals”? What does Paolozzi see in his monstrous figures assembled from industrial debris? And why does Oldenburg remake everyday products from urban scrap?
Published in association with the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC.
Hal Foster is the author of numerous books, including, mostly recently, What Comes After Farce? Art and Criticism at a Time of Debacle (Verso, 2020), and Brutal Aesthetics (Princeton University Press, 2020), his 2018 Mellon Lectures at the National Gallery in Washington. A member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, he teaches at Princeton University, co-edits the journal October, and contributes regularly to the London Review of Books and Artforum.
Leah Dickerman is the Director of Editorial and Content Strategy at the Museum of Modern Art, and has served on the editorial board of the journal October since 2001. Over the course of her career, Dickerman has organized or co-organized a series of award-winning exhibitions including Robert Rauschenberg: Among Friends (2017), One-Way Ticket: Jacob Lawrence's Migration Series and Other Works (2015), Inventing Abstraction, 1910-1925 (2012-2013), Bauhaus: Workshops for Modernity (2009-2010) and Dada (2005-2006).