From the Chair

While I remember where and when I came to possess most of my books and other written and printed ephemera, there are some that I simply cannot recall the path by which they came to be on my shelf. Often, like in this moment, I look for a book that I know I have but...

From the Chair

As spring began this past weekend I was burning off a part of my garden and, in a momentary lapse of focus, the flame from my asparagus patch bit me and quickly regained my attention. The scent of my own burnt hair stayed with me all day, reminding me how important it...

From the Chair

Art, like life, is full of recurring themes, variations on historical models and thematic evolutions. Those moments that create iconic visual images or objects are the very stuff of ephemerality; they are gaussian and recurring, yes, however the dependability of when...

From the Chair

I gave a lecture to my Contemporary Art History class recently called Slippages and Resets: Re-booting Identity and Jump-starting the Art World. It begins with a performative, photographic self-portrait by the artist Renee Cox, Yo Mama, from 1993. It is a self...

From the Chair

I want my students to know everything that I know; all of the history of contemporary art, all of the annotations of that history, all the artists that inspired and continue to inspire me, the films, exhibitions, and cultural events I have witnessed. I want them to...

From the Chair

I was recently asked if I had a definition for the word art. I think, speak, and write about art constantly, but the question was, at the moment it was asked, unanswerable. I realized later that such a question is perhaps always lurking behind our conversations about...