Howard Singerman

Howard Singerman is Phyllis and Joseph Caroff Chair of the Department of Art and Art History at Hunter College, City University of New York. He is the author of Art Subjects: Making Artists in the American University and Art History, after Sherrie Levine and editor of Sherrie Levine (MIT Press).

  • Sharon Lockhart

    Sharon Lockhart

    Pine Flat

    Howard Singerman

    A nuanced reading of an artwork that explores a place, transitory and pastoral, where childhood might be lived and imagined differently

    Sharon Lockhart's Pine Flat (2006) takes its name from a small hamlet in the foothills of the western slope of the Sierra Nevadas, just inside the Giant Sequoia National Monument. The work itself comprises three distinct parts: a set of three photographs of landscapes; a larger set of posed studio portraits of children and young teenagers; and a 138-minute 16-millimeter film, which is itself assembled from twelve ten-minute scenes—each a single immobile take—divided in half by a ten-minute intermission. This volume in Afterall's One Work series offers a nuanced reading of Lockhart's work, with color illustrations from both series of photographs and the film.

    Art historian Howard Singerman sees in Pine Flat not a straightforward portrait of a community of children or ethnography of a place. Rather, the work explores the possibility of a space for childhood in which children have the right to intimacy, innocence, and interest outside adult narratives. The children in Pine Flat are posed formally and conventionally, but the space they occupy and the identities they construct are their own. Youth culture has long been exploited, to sell itself in order to be sold to; today, the rights of children to their own childhoods are constantly eroded. In Pine Flat, Singerman argues, Lockhart proposes a place, transitory and pastoral, “where childhood might be lived differently, imagined under a different order of power and possibility.”

    • Paperback $19.95 £14.99
  • Sherrie Levine

    Sherrie Levine

    Howard Singerman

    Texts—including essays, reviews, and statements by the artist—on the work of Sherrie Levine.

    The artist Sherrie Levine (b. 1947) is best known for her appropriations of work by other artists—most famously for her rephotographs of canonical images by Edward Weston, Eliot Porter, and other masters of modern photography. Since those works of the early 1980s, she has continued to work on and “after” artists whose names have come to define modernism, making sculpture after Brancusi and Duchamp, paintings after Malevich and Blinky Palermo, watercolors after Matisse and Miro, photographs after Monet and Cezanne as well as Alfred Stieglitz. Throughout, Levine's practice effectively uncompleted, decentered, and extended works of art that were once singular and finished, posing critical rebuttals to some of the basic assumptions of modernist aesthetics. Her work was central to the theorization of postmodernism in the visual arts—most notably as it emerged in the pages of October magazine. It challenged authorial sovereignty and aesthetic autonomy and invited readings that opened onto gender, history, and the economic and discursive processes of the art world. This collection gathers writings on Levine from art magazines, exhibition catalogs, and academic journals, spanning much of her career.

    The volume begins with texts by Douglas Crimp, Rosalind Krauss, and Craig Owens that situate Levine in postmodernist discourse and link her early work to October. The essays that follow draw on these first critical forays and complicate them, at once deepening and resisting them, as Levine's own work has done. All the essays attempt to understand the relationship between Levine and the artists she cites and the objects that she recasts. In these pages, Levine's oddly doubled works appear as chimeras, taxidermy, fandom, pratfalls, even Poussin's Blind Orion.

    Contributors Michel Assenmaker, Douglas Crimp, Erich Franz, Catherine Ingraham, David Joselit, Susan Kandel, Rosalind Krauss, Sylvia Lavin, Sherrie Levine, Maria Loh, Stephen Melville, Craig Owens, Howard Singerman

    • Hardcover $45.00 £35.00
    • Paperback $24.95 £20.00
  • Forest Of Signs

    Art in the Crisis of Representation

    Ann Goldstein, Mary Jane Jacob, Anne Rorimer, and Howard Singerman

    A Forest of Signs documents a major exhibition of critical art in the last decade, one that marks a change in the art world, perhaps even in the broader culture. The thread of representation ties together the work of the 30 artists included in the book, encompassing such issues as allegory, appropriation, and commodification, the role of the artist, and the functions of authorship and originality in vesting meaning in art. Much of the work is provocative, challenging the way we look at art, the way we talk about it, where we see it, and how we buy it.The development of these issues and their role in shifting the focus of much recent art from insistence on the art as object, to a host of representations is addressed in four essays and a section of "artists' pages." In the first essay, exhibition co-organizer Ann Goldstein discusses the individual artists and points to key issues and methods in their art. The artists themselves are represented by a 60 page portfolio of their works. Designed by the artists, these pages include personal statements, the remarks of others, works made specifically for the book and works using the tools of mechanical reproduction.In the three essays that follow, Anne Rorimer, former Curator of 20th Century Painting and Sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago, traces the roots of recent American art to the development of international conceptualism in the 1960s and early 1970s; Mary Jane Jacob, exhibition co-organizer and MOCA Chief Curator, places the artists within the current trends of European as well as American art; and editor and critic Howard Singerman examines the relationship of recent art to its circle of critics and to the emergence of critical theory. Copublished with the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

    The Artists: Richard Baim, Thomas Lawson, Judith Barry, Sherrie Levine, Ericka Beckman, Robert Longo, Gretchen Bender, Allan McCollum, Dara Birnbaum, Matt Mullican, Barbara Bloom, Peter Nagy, Troy Brauntuch, Stephen Prina, Sarah Charlesworth, Richard Prince, Jack Goldstein, Cindy Sherman, Jenny Holzer, Laurie Simmons, Larry Johnson, Haim Steinbach, Ronald Jones, Mitchell Syrop, Mike Kelley, James Welling, Jeff Koons, Christopher Williams, Barbara Kruger, Louise Lawler

    • Hardcover $37.50