The Forward: When Even A Boy Einstein Doesn’t Have ‘All The Answers’

John Reed


Michael Kupperman grew up in Connecticut, hidden away in suburbia along with a family secret; Kupperman’s professor father, Joel Kupperman, had been a child star, one of the most popular and recognized child stars of his generation.

As the “genius” boy Einstein of the largely rigged show “Quiz Kids,” Joel Kupperman had been cast as exemplar to a less objectionable popularization of the Jewish people. …

The Brooklyn Rail: 'The Solitary Twin' by Harry Mathews

John Reed


During the years I was pursuing my graduate degree in creative writing at Columbia University, Harry Mathews was a beloved mentor, and in the years since, as I’ve been faculty at The New School graduate writing program, he has been not only a mentor, but a colleague and a friend.

Ok, actually, I did overlap with Mathews at Columbia University and at The New School, but I never took a class with him, and I never talked to him. …

Times Literary Supplement: ‘Georgia’ a novel by Dawn Trip

John Reed


Well, for those of you who subscribe to the Times Literary Supplement, I have a review of Dawn Tripp's novel, Georgia in this week's issue:

Wilully, Americans tell the story of Georgia O’Keeffe: the story of the southwestern female artist and pioneer. The story is wrong in three ways: once for the remnants of the arguments it contains, mounted by art critics in the 1920s, that O’Keeffe embodied the art of a woman, more sensual ...

The New York Times: 'Francis Bacon in Your Blood: A Memoir'

John Reed


Reviewing 'Francis Bacon in Your Blood: A Memoir,' by Michael Peppiatt 

When Michael Peppiatt, at 21, met Francis Bacon, the 53-year-old artist was already all artifice, well spoken when well rehearsed, his bistro doctrines applauded by clinking glasses. Peppiatt, having taken over a student arts journal at Cambridge, had shown up in London’s Soho. It was 1963, and Peppiatt laid claim to but a tenuous introduction to the renowned painter he sought. …

Brooklyn Rail: Alexandra Chasin's Brief

John Reed

A short piece this month’s Brooklyn Rail on Alexandra Chasin's Brief


(Jaded Ibis Books, 2013):

We look at art in context, but what about people? 

Of course, during a trial, we hear about the childhood, the hours alone, and the alcoholic step-parent, etc. And maybe that mediates our decision-making in the sentencing phase. Or maybe not. Regardless, we don’t look at history; we don't say—we were invading such-and-such a country at that moment, or we were dropping bombs on so-many innocent civilians that morning so talking about the theft of, let's say, a television, is beyond absurd. …

Klemens Gasser “Antigone Things”

John Reed


"Congratulations to Klemens & Alban Gasser on completing their PADI Open Water  certification.  Excellent job guys well done. Safe diving!"

This is a press release.  Klemens told me he didn't think he'd get press.  He said he thought this was the press.  Sort of, he said that.  He showed me some canvases that are going to be in the show, and then he showed me some canvases that aren't going to be in the show.  For context, he showed me the ones that aren't going to be in the show.  For context: the ones that aren't going to be in the show are raw canvases with drying paint pressed through to the other side of the canvas.  …

The Believer: Peter Neumeyer, Edward Gorey in Floating Worlds

John Reed

Looked at the correspondence of Peter Neumeyer and Edward Gorey, Floating Worlds, for the Believer

(Incidentally, I also talked to Peter for Art in America.)

We are perhaps as well situated as we’ve ever been to solve the curiously tempting and elusive riddle of Edward Gorey. His illustrative style and design sensibility—a precious iteration of befuddlement and Gothicism—presage twenty-first-century trends in the comic arts, East and West. …

The Rumpus and Critical Mass: Jonathan Lethem’s "The Ecstasy of Influence"

John Reed


Each day leading up to the March 8 announcement of the 2011 NBCC award winners, Critical Mass is highlighting our thirty finalists. In a first, the NBCC is partnering with other websites to promote our finalists as well in the categories of Criticism and Poetry. Our Criticism finalists will appear on The Rumpus, our Poetry finalists will appear March 7 at O, the Oprah Magazine website. Here is #24 in our series, NBCC board member

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