was thinking of a book, but I didnt like that
--- Marcel Duchamp
painting The Artists Studio: A Real Allegory
Summing up Seven Years of My Artistic Life attempted
to represent the world coming to the artist in his
studio. In this work shown outside the official
grounds of the Universal Exhibition of 1855, Courbet
divided his world of representation between the
"shareholders," his supporters, and that
to which he was opposed, "misery, poverty,
wealth, the exploited and the exploiters, the people
who live off death." While for Courbet the
challenge may have been to make a statement in the
shadows of the Second Empires showcase of
national and international progress, for me the
task has been far more modest in scale. My virtual
allegory sifts through the themes, thinkers,
and texts that have preoccupied my intellectual
life during the past seven years. This task also
has been a matter of thinking through how these
themes and thinkers haunt my own writing and how
the work of several of my artistic colleagues have
played a role in my continued engagement with these
ideas since graduating from Bryn Mawr College.
The tenuous and open-ended moment of this process,
represented through this site, operates in at least
four ways. First, as a nonlinear work comprised
of quotes, texts, and images that offer a reconfiguration
of my past work into new relations of interconnections.
The texts represent a sketch for a book or possibly
a book of sketches, as well as a questioning of
the nature of the book today both virtually and
allegorically. Second, as a research tool built
around the themes and thinkers presented within
the site. The pages of quotes are at once collages
of text and starting points for future textual collages.
Third, as a virtual gallery featuring the work of
eight Philadelphia artists. In addition to the work
of these colleagues, students, and interlocutors,
there are photographs dispersed throughout the site
that relate to the texts presented. This virtual
gallery is open to future installations and exhibitions.
Lastly, it is a journey offered to the browser.
This journey may begin from any of the images in
the opening collage or through the pull-down menu.
The user may journey from within the site through
specific sets of interrelated links or jump to any
area within the site through the use of the internal
pull-down menu. In practice and theory, the site
offers a unique and particular journey for each
visit and visitor, as the more that one explores
the more one will discover within the site. The
result of the users journey is not a conclusive
end, but rather a beginning, a process of negotiating
through the texts and images provided towards a
future where the user may arrive at her own particular
understanding of the experience that awaits.
In closing and opening, let me acknowledge that
all too few of my supporters from the past seven
years appear within this site. Indeed, to acknowledge
all of my supporters would be an interminable task.
Nevertheless, I would like to thank the Center for
Visual Culture and Lisa Kolonay for the support
and opportunity to undertake this project. I would
also like to acknowledge my colleagues at Bryn Mawr
College, including David Cast, Dale Kinney, Christiane
Hertel, and Lisa Saltzman, for all of their help
over the years. I would also like to acknowledge
the memory of Phyllis Bober, whose conversations
on an extraordinary breadth of topics echo within
my consciousness. Most of all, I would like to thank
Steven Levine. Without his help and advice my intellectual
life would be greatly impoverished.
Questions, comments, and discussions around particular
topics are encouraged and may be directed to and
may be directed to Kevin Richards: email@example.com.
Thank you for your time.
E-mail addresses for artists
featured in "Art Historian's Studio":
Paul Hubbard- firstname.lastname@example.org
Martha Gelarden- email@example.com
Alice Oh- Rome520@aol.com
Doug Bucci- firstname.lastname@example.org
Nora Litz- Mazapantli@aol.com
Melissa D'Agostino- email@example.com
Steven Dufala- firstname.lastname@example.org
Billy Dufala- email@example.com
Art Historian's Studio