The Passionate Spectator: Essays on Art and Poetry

Overview

The Passionate Spectator collects essays, reviews, and art criticism by John Yau, an internationally lauded poet, critic, and curator. In this wide-ranging collection, Yau explores the intersection of art and poetry, dissolving boundaries between the artistic traditions and reimagining what it means to see and to write. Whether he is interpreting the poetic use of titles in Jessica Stockholder’s paintings, reviewing the collaborative book project between American poet Robert Creeley and German artist Georg ...

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Overview

The Passionate Spectator collects essays, reviews, and art criticism by John Yau, an internationally lauded poet, critic, and curator. In this wide-ranging collection, Yau explores the intersection of art and poetry, dissolving boundaries between the artistic traditions and reimagining what it means to see and to write. Whether he is interpreting the poetic use of titles in Jessica Stockholder’s paintings, reviewing the collaborative book project between American poet Robert Creeley and German artist Georg Baselitz, or considering the significance of Frank O’Hara’s decision to have his portrait drawn wearing nothing but army boots, Yau is consistently daring, original, and contemporary.
 
Yau’s diverse critical sensibilities permeate The Passionate Spectator as he moves seamlessly between the visual and literary arts. Highlights of this collection include an essay on the poet as art critic, a study of the relationship between Kevin Young’s poetry and the paintings of Jean-Michel Basquiat, and an imaginative piece in which Yau speculates about what Jorge Luis Borges would have created had he been a visual artist. In the title essay, Yau lays out the duty of the spectator—a duty shared by viewer, reader, critic, and artist: “it is up to us to experience art, to engage and believe in its power.”.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780472069521
  • Publisher: University of Michigan Press
  • Publication date: 11/27/2006
  • Series: Poets on Poetry Series
  • Pages: 144
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Table of Contents


Passionate Spectator: On Frank O'Hara's Art Criticism     1
At the Movies with Weldon Kees and Frank O'Hara     18
The Poet as Art Critic     40
"Feelings Are Not Quiet": Life & Death   Robert Creeley     66
Robert Creeley and Georg Baselitz's Signs     71
Philip Lamantia     76
Archie Rand's The Letter Paintings     78
Street Song: The Art of Jean-Michel Basquiat and the Poetry of Kevin Young     87
The Poetry of Jessica Stockholder's Titles     102
The Poet-Painters: Francesco Clemente and Nicola De Maria     109
Open Books: "Emblems for Robert Duncan"   Jess     120
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