The Object of Labor: Art, Cloth, and Cultural Production / Edition 1

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The Object of Labor explores the personal, political, social, and economic meaning of work in the context of art and textile production. The ubiquity of cloth in everyday life, the historically resonant relationship of textile and cloth to labor, and the tumultuous drive of globalization make the issues raised by this pubication of special interest today. The seventeen essays cover topics ranging from art-making practices to labor history and the effects of globalization as seen through art and labor. The artists' projects--twelve striking and beautiful eight-page, full color spreads--conduct parallel investigations into art, cloth, and work.The contributors explore, from historical and personal perspectives, such subjects as the charged history of offshore garment workers; the different systems of production and consumption in factories, homes, studios, and exhibitions; the revelation of class, gender, and sexuality through cloth, costume, and textile images; textile production as commemorative acts in South Africa, the United States,
and India; transnationalism, cultural hybridity, and race in the work of individual artists; lost histories of garment production and embroidery; the physical act of art-making as labor; and the value of handmade and "technologically improved"
objects.Artist projects and portfolios by Susie Brandt, Nick Cave, Park Chambers,
Lisa Clark, Lia Cook, Ann Hamilton, Kimsooja, Barbara Layne and Sue Rowley, Lara
Lepionka, Merrill Mason, Darrel Morris, PepĆ³n Osorio, J. Morgan Puett and Iain Kerr,
Karen Reimer, Yinka Shonibare, SubRosa, Christine Tarkowski, Anne Wilson

The MIT Press

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262122900
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 7/31/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 422
  • Product dimensions: 7.37 (w) x 9.37 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Joan Livingstone is an artist, Chair of the Undergraduate Division, and Professor in the Department of Fiber and Material Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work is in the permanent collections of museums including the
Detroit Institute of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Museum of
Contemporary Art, Chicago.

John Ploof is an artist and Chair of the Department of Art Education at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He works with his urban neighbors in Chicago on participatory public projects. As a member of the internationally acclaimed artists'
collective Haha, his work has been shown at the Aperto, XLV Venice Biennale;
Grimaldi Forum, Monaco; MASS MoCA; The New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York; and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston.

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Table of Contents

Introduction     vi
Piecework: Home, Factory, Studio, Exhibit     1
Labor, History, and Sweatshops in the New Global Economy     31
That Word Which Means Smuggling Across Borders, Incorporated: The Multipled Suit     51
Work Now     59
Machine Dreams     67
Can You See Us Now?     81
Lace Curtains for Troy     89
Damask     105
Amazwi Abesifazane: Voices of Women     113
Amazwi Abesifazane: Reclaiming the Emotional and Public Self     131
Visible Links     143
I mean this     151
Stitching Women's Lives: Sujuni and Khatwa from Bihar, India     159
Inventory of Labor     181
Signifiers     189
Home Work     197
What are you making?     219
from Prototypes for New Understanding     227
Sew Your Own Stump Flag     229
from Trials and Turbulence     235
Torn and Mended: Textile Actions at Ground Zero and Beyond     239
Ada Lovelace and the Loom of Life     255
Hands on Spots     265
Biting and Chewing in Contemporary Art     273
from Soundsuits     281
Laboured Cloth:Translations of Hybridity in Contemporary Art     283
Big Boy, Leisure Lady, Gay Victorians     295
from Cities on the Move     297
Material with a Memory     299
An Aesthetic of Blackness: strange and oppositional Aesthetic Inheritances: history worked by hand     315
from indigo blue     333
Deco-jamming is Eco-glam!     337
Hand Labour and Digital Capitalism at the Chicago Board of Trade     357
Iron Into Lace     369
Artist as Insect     377
Contributors     393
Acknowledgments     398
Credits     399
Index     400
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