Annette Michelson

Annette Michelson (1922–2018) was Professor Emeritus in the Department of Cinema Studies at New York University. A founding editor of the journal October, she wrote on art and cinema for more than five decades. Some of Michelson's essays on film were recently published in On the Eve of the Future: Selected Writings on Film (MIT Press).

  • Michael Snow

    Michael Snow

    Annette Michelson and Kenneth White

    Essential texts on the work of the influential artist Michael Snow: essays and interviews spanning more than four decades.

    Few filmmakers have had as large an impact on the recent avant-garde film scene as Canadian Michael Snow (b. 1928). His works in a range of media—film, installation, video, painting, sculpture, sound, photography, drawing, writing, and music—address the fundamental properties of his materials, the conditions of perception and experience, questions of authorship in technologically reproducible media, and techniques of translation through written and pictorial representation. His film Wavelength (1967) is a milestone of avant-garde cinema and possibly the most frequently discussed “structural” film ever made. This volume collects essential texts on Snow's work, with essays and interviews spanning more than four decades.

    From its earliest issues, October has been a primary interlocutor of Snow's work, and many of these texts first appeared in its pages. Written by such distinguished critics and scholars as Annette Michelson, Hubert Damisch, and Malcolm Turvey, they document Snow's participation in postwar discourses of minimalism, postminimalism, photo-conceptualism, and avant-garde cinema, and examine particular works. Thierry de Duve's essay on linguistics in Snow's work appears alongside Snow's response. The volume also includes other writings by Snow, images from his 1975 work Musics for Piano, Whistling, Microphone, and Tape Recorder, and an interview with the artist conducted by Annette Michelson.

    Essays and interviews Jean Arnaud, Érik Bullot, Hubert Damisch, Thierry de Duve, Andrée Hayum, Annette Michelson, Michael Snow, Amy Taubin, Malcolm Turvey, Kenneth White

    • Hardcover $45.00 £38.00
    • Paperback $24.95 £20.00
  • On the Eve of the Future

    On the Eve of the Future

    Selected Writings on Film

    Annette Michelson

    The first collection of Annette Michelson's influential writings on film, with essays on work by Marcel Duchamp, Maya Deren, Hollis Frampton, Martha Rosler, and others.

    The celebrated critic and film scholar Annette Michelson saw the avant-garde filmmakers of the 1950s and 1960s as radically redefining and extending the Modernist tradition of painting and sculpture, and in essays that were as engaging as they were influential and as lucid as they were learned, she set out to demonstrate the importance of the underappreciated medium of film. On the Eve of the Future collects more than thirty years' worth of those essays, focusing on her most relevant engagements with avant-garde production in experimental cinema, particularly with the movement known as American Independent Cinema.

    This volume includes the first critical essay on Marcel Duchamp's film Anemic Cinema, the first investigation into Joseph Cornell's filmic practices, and the first major explorations of Michael Snow. It offers an important essay on Maya Deren, whose work was central to that era of renewal and reinvention, seminal critiques of Stan Brakhage, Hollis Frampton, and Harry Smith, and overviews of Independent Cinema. Gathered here for the first time, these texts demonstrate Michelson's pervasive influence as a writer and thinker and her role in the establishment of cinema studies as an academic field.

    The postwar generation of Independents worked to develop radically new terms, techniques, and strategies of production and distribution. Michelson shows that the fresh new forms they created from the legacy of Modernism became the basis of new forms of spectatorship and cinematic pleasure.

    • Hardcover $39.95 £32.00
  • Andy Warhol

    Andy Warhol

    Annette Michelson

    A critical primer on the work of Andy Warhol.

    Andy Warhol (1928-1987), one of the most celebrated artists of the last third of the twentieth century, owes his unique place in the history of visual culture not to the mastery of a single medium but to the exercise of multiple media and roles. A legendary art world figure, he worked as an artist, filmmaker, photographer, collector, author, and designer. Beginning in the 1950s as a commercial artist, he went on to produce work for exhibition in galleries and museums. The range of his efforts soon expanded to the making of films, photography, video, and books. Warhol first came to public notice in the 1960s through works that drew on advertising, brand names, and newspaper stories and headlines. Many of his best-known images, both single and in series, were produced within the context of pop art. Warhol was a major figure in the bridging of the gap between high and low art, and his mode of production in the famous studio known as "The Factory" involved the recognition of art making as one form of enterprise among others. The radical nature of that enterprise has ensured the iconic status of his art and person. Andy Warhol contains illustrated essays by Benjamin H. D. Buchloh, Thomas Crow, Hal Foster, Rosalind Krauss, Annette Michelson, and Nan Rosenthal, plus a previously unpublished interview with Warhol by Buchloh. The essays address Warhol's relation to and effect on mass culture and the recurrence of disaster and death in his art.

    • Hardcover $40.00 £32.00
    • Paperback $25.00 £20.00
  • October

    October

    The Second Decade, 1986-1996

    Rosalind E. Krauss, Annette Michelson, Yve-Alain Bois, Benjamin H. D. Buchloh, Hal Foster, Denis Hollier, and Silvia Koblowski

    October: The Second Decade collects examples of the innovative critical and theoretical work for which the journal October is known. A journal anthology draws a collective portrait; together, the gathered texts demonstrate the journal's ambitions and strengths. From the outset, October's aim has been to consider a range of cultural practices and to assess their place at a particular historical juncture. That task has now taken on an intensified urgency. The catastrophic state of our urban economies and the attendant social crises, as well as the more general predicaments of a postcolonial era, have had an inescapable impact on the cultural and discursive practices that are October's concern. Hence, October in its second decade has had an intensified concern with the role of cultural production within the public sphere and a sharper focus on the intersections of cultural practices with institutional structures. The topics of inquiry include body politics and psychoanalysis, spectacle and institutional critique, art practice and art history, and postcolonial discourse.

    Contributors Carol Armstrong, Leo Bersani, Homi Bhabha, Yve-Alain Bois, Mikkel Borch-Jacobsen, Benjamin H. D. Buchloh, Susan Buck-Morss, Lygia Clark, T. J. Clark, Jonathan Crary, Gilles Deleuze, Manthia Diawara, Peter Eisenman, Hal Foster, Group Material, Denis Hollier, Alexander Kluge, Gertrud Koch, Silvia Kolbowski, Rosalind Krauss, Annette Michelson, Helen Molesworth, V. Y. Mudimbe, Oskar Negt, Mignon Nixon

    • Hardcover $52.00
  • Cinema, Censorship, and the State

    Cinema, Censorship, and the State

    The Writings of Nagisa Oshima, 1956-1978

    Nagisa Oshima and Annette Michelson

    The texts in this volume make up an intellectual autobiography that reveals a rare conjunction of personal candor and political commitment.

    Nagisa Oshima is generally regarded as the most important Japanese film. director after Kurosawa and is one of Japan's most productive and celebrated postwar artists. His early films represent the Japanese New Wave at its zenith, and the films he has made since (including In the Realm of the Senses and Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence) have won international acclaim. The more than 40 writings that make up this intellectual autobiography reveal a rare conjunction of personal candor and political commitment. Entertaining, concise, disarmingingly insightful, they trace in vivid and carefully articulated detail the development of Oshima's theory and practice.The writings are arranged in chronological order and cover the period from the mid-1950s to the mid-1980s. Following a historical overview of the contemporary Japanese cinema, a substantial section articulates the theoretical and political rationale of 0shima's film production. Among many other topics considered in his essays, Oshima questions the economics of film production, the ethics of the documentary film, censorship (both political and sexual), and the relation of aesthetics and social taboos. A filmography and notes round out this important collection.

    • Hardcover $58.00
    • Paperback $30.00 £25.00
  • October

    The First Decade, 1976-1986

    Annette Michelson, Rosalind E. Krauss, Douglas Crimp, and Joan Copjec

    OCTOBER: The First Decade brings together a selection of some of the most important and representative texts, many from issues long out of print, that have appeared in one of the foremost journals in art criticism and theory.

    Contributors Rosalind Krauss, Sergei Eisenstein, Peter Handke, Georges Didi Huberman, Mary Ann Doane, and Hans Haacke. Their essays are organized under the categories of the index, historical materialism, the critique of institutions, psychoanalysis, rhetoric, and the body.

    • Hardcover $40.00
    • Paperback $17.95