"A compelling memoir that blends observation, personal revelation and scholarly inquiry." -Los Angeles Times "This esoteric, organic meditation on life as an art object is itself a model of personal writing, perfect for those on either side of the easel." -Publishers Weekly "Starred Review" "A spirited and thought-provoking exploration of the human figure, Live Nude Girl beckons the oft-clothed to share the thrill of taking it off." -Utne Reader "[This is] a memoir of Rooney's career as an art model that wrestles with the headier issues of the naked form as inspiration, objectification for the sake of art, and the role of a muse throughout history. . . . We'll be watching as Ms. Rooney seems as compelling a talent in her future off the pedestal as on." -Huffington Post "Rooney is a poet as well as a model and, for her, time spent naked, being photographed or painted, is an opportunity for the stillness and repose that is the starting place for her own meditations on art and on womanhood." -Times Literary Supplement "If Live Nude Girl caught your eye, promised, beckonedgood. Follow the enticement and you'll encounter the thrill of a rigorous and questioning mind in motion." -Lia Purpura, author of On Looking "Kathleen Rooney boldly and bravely dissects what it means to disrobe in the name of artand money." -Rachel Kramer Bussel, editor of Best Sex Writing 2009 "The writing is enticing, engaging, inviting, and the anecdotes are irresistible." -Peter Stitt, editor of The Gettysburg Review
Live Nude Girl: My Life as an Objectby Kathleen Rooney
Live Nude Girl is a lively meditation on the profession of nude modeling- that "spine-tingling combination of power and vulnerability, submission and dominance"-as it has been practiced in history and as it is practiced today. Kathleen Rooney draws on her own experiences working as a nude model, as well as on the stories of famous, notorious, and mysterious artists
Live Nude Girl is a lively meditation on the profession of nude modeling- that "spine-tingling combination of power and vulnerability, submission and dominance"-as it has been practiced in history and as it is practiced today. Kathleen Rooney draws on her own experiences working as a nude model, as well as on the stories of famous, notorious, and mysterious artists and models through the ages, to reveal that both the appeal of posing nude for artists and the appeal of drawing the naked figure lie in our deeply human responses to beauty, sex, love, and death.
Author, award-winning poet and professional artists' model Rooney (Reading with Oprah, Something Really Wonderful) uses everything from Roland Barthes quotations to sitcom episode synopses off the internet (specifically, fortunecity.com on Growing Pains) to explore the myths and realities of nude modeling. Despite the fact that it largely consists of sitting still for hours on end, Rooney keeps work stories compelling: "with the sculptors continually approaching... to rotate you slightly... it's like you're on the world's slowest and most boring Teacup Ride." Posing for an advanced sculpting class working on life-sized renderings, Rooney merges her experience with a look at China's ancient Terra Cotta Army; elsewhere she tackles semantics, quoting art historian Kenneth Clark on the difference between "naked" and "nude." Happily, Rooney is perfectly willing to satisfy readers' curiosity upfront in order to move in more philosophical directions, going from awkward first impressions ("the first thing they ask is, 'Like, naked?'") to questions of safety and empowerment ("I feel safer from sexual predation naked in the art studio than I do... clothed on the street"). This esoteric, organic meditation on life as an art object is itself a model of personal writing, perfect for those on either side of the easel.
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- University of Arkansas Press
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- Product dimensions:
- 5.70(w) x 8.80(h) x 0.60(d)
Meet the Author
Kathleen Rooney is the author of Reading with Oprah: The Book Club that Changed America, as well as the poetry collections Oneiromance (An Epithalamion), Something Really Wonderful, and That Tiny Insane Voluptuousness, the latter two written collaboratively with Elisa Gabbert. Her essay "Live Nude Girl" was selected for Twentysomething Essays by Twentysomething Writers.
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