Admission and $10 off at our bookstore
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Thursday, 7:00 pm October 24, 2019
An exploration into connections between visual art and fiction for a cross-disciplinary discussion focusing on Susan Steinberg’s novel Machine and Heidi Kumao’s installation work. Co-presented with Yaddo.
Susan Steinberg is the author of Spectacle, Hydroplane, and The End of Free Love. She is the recipient of a United States Artists Fellowship, a National Magazine Award, and a Pushcart Prize. She teaches at the University of San Francisco.
Heidi Kumao is an interdisciplinary artist who creates videos, animations, machine art, and installations to explore ordinary social interactions and their psychological undercurrents. These works range in media from robotic girl’s legs and wearable electronics to video sculpture and experimental film.
Her hybrid film, Swallowed Whole, about breaking her back, screened in over 25 film international film festivals and was awarded “Best Experimental Film” at the Female Eye and Humboldt International Film Festivals in 2015. She has received fellowships from the Creative Capital Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. She is a professor at the Stamps School of Art & Design at the University of Michigan.
Yaddo is a residency program in Saratoga Springs, New York that nurtures the creative process by providing an opportunity for artists to work without interruption in a supportive environment. Yaddo offers residencies to artists from all nations and backgrounds working in the fields of dance, film, literature, musical composition, visual art, performance, and video. Collectively, their work has touched millions of lives.
By Susan Steinberg
Susan Steinberg’s first novel, Machine, is a dazzling and innovative leap forward for a writer whose most recent book, Spectacle, gained her a rapturous following. Machine revolves around a group of teenagers—both locals and wealthy out-of-towners—during a single summer at the shore. After a local girl drowns, the narrator tries to piece together what happened and struggles to find mooring in the aftermath. In formally daring prose, Steinberg captures the violence of desire and its reverberations. The restless rhythm of the novel propels a sharply drawn narrative that ferociously interrogates gender, class, privilege, and the disintegration of identity in the shadow of trauma. Machine is the kind of novel—relentless and bold—that only Susan Steinberg could have written.
“What makes [Machine] so thrilling is Steinberg’s artistry with form; she fractures narrative into its fundamental parts. Steinberg writes prose with a poet’s sense of meter and line, and a velocity recalling the novels of Joan Didion. The result is a dizzying work that perfectly evokes the feeling of spinning out of control.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Steinberg writes in small, interconnected, and poetic fragments. . . . Heartbreaking, eerie, and acutely observant.”—Kirkus, starred review
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