Remote Control: Power, Cultures, and the World of Appearances

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Who speaks? Who is silent? Who is seen? Who is absent? These questions focus on how cultures are constructed through pictures and words, how we are seduced into a world of appearances: into a pose of who we are and aren't. On both an emotional and an economic level, images and texts have the power to make us rich or poor. In these essays and reviews, written over the last decade, Barbara Kruger addresses that power with intelligence and wit, in the hope of engaging both our ...
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Overview

Who speaks? Who is silent? Who is seen? Who is absent? These questions focus on how cultures are constructed through pictures and words, how we are seduced into a world of appearances: into a pose of who we are and aren't. On both an emotional and an economic level, images and texts have the power to make us rich or poor. In these essays and reviews, written over the last decade, Barbara Kruger addresses that power with intelligence and wit, in the hope of engaging both our criticality and our dreams of affirmation.

Barbara Kruger is an artist whose pictures and words engage issues of power, sex, money, difference, and death. Her work has appeared throughout America, Europe, and Japan in galleries, newspapers, magazines, and museums and on billboards, matchbooks, TV programs, t-shirts, postcards, and shopping bags. She has written about television, film, and cultures for Artforum, Esquire, the New York Times, and the Village Voice.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Kruger, an artist whose subversively direct works address such themes as power, sexual politics and money, is mostly on target as a social and cultural critic in these essays, reviews and prose poems originally published in Artforum , Esquire , the Village Voice and elsewhere during the last 14 years. She forcefully describes TV as a thought-control device, a powerful sedative that aims to satisfy viewers' needs for order, control and connection; and her critique is buttressed by a sophisticated analysis of documentaries, courtroom dramas and an array of popular series. Her brilliant movie reviews capture the creative ferment of experimental and international filmmaking and expose the pretensions of mainstream fare. The big and small screen predominate in this miscellany, but Kruger also has much to say on radio host Howard Stern (``crazily funny'' but also an embodiment of ``dangerously unexamined populism''), Andy Warhol, work, money and photography. (Nov.)
Benjamin Segedin
Like her work as a visual artist, Kruger's essays, published in such journals as "Artforum" and the "Village Voice", are about the ideological messages encoded in popular culture and how those messages convey certain attitudes toward the roles of women and minorities. Probing such seemingly innocuous television programming as "L.A. Law," "Entertainment Tonight," "The Home Shopping Club," "Good Morning, America," and the Iran-Contra hearings, as well as more subversive cultural products such as the independent films of Yvonne Rainer and Chantal Ackerman, Howard Stern's radio show, and the work of Andy Warhol, Kruger deconstructs media and art and shows how words and images manipulate and obscure meaning as they are force-fed down our throats. Kruger is an important contemporary artist, and her writing, while somewhat dense and polemical, is worthy of examination.
Booknews
A collection of Kruger's caustic essays--most of which have appeared in Artforum, Esquire, The New York Times, and the Village Voice, although a few are previously unpublished. She comments on television, talk radio, the omnipresence of Madison Avenue, the New York Film Festival, the Home Shopping Club, and other artifacts of our culture. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262111775
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 9/21/1993
  • Series: Writing Art Series
  • Pages: 251
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 0.92 (d)

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