Uncollected Texts draws together a number of Carolee Schneemann’s earliest writings—many exceedingly rare and several that are published here for the first time—ranging from letters to the editor, dream journals, and film criticism, to satirical poems, detailed discussions of her art, and pointed feminist critiques. Edited by Branden W. Joseph, the book includes 30 texts by Carolee Schneemann written between 1956 and 1981, as well as an introduction by Joseph.
First published in short-run magazines like Caterpillar, Film Culture, The Fox, Manipulations, and Matter; academic journals such as Performing Arts Journal; and mainstream publications including the New York Times and The Village Voice, the writings gathered in this volume shed light on some of Schneemann’s most important artistic achievements. Schneemann writes about her most famous “kinetic theater” piece, Meat Joy; anti-Vietnam War works such as Snows, Viet-Flakes, and Divisions and Rubble; the multimedia performance Up to and Including Her Limits; and the double-screen film Kitch’s Last Meal. Frequently referring to one another, the assembled writings produce a densely interwoven tapestry of cross-references that provide unique insights into Schneemann’s artistic development while also foregrounding the artist’s uniquely poetic style.
Carolee Schneemann is an artist based in Upstate New York. For over 60 years, she has worked in painting, photography, performance, film, video, mixed media, and installations to create groundbreaking pieces that focus on gender, politics, and sexuality. The recent retrospective Carolee Schneemann: Kinetic Painting originated at Museum der Moderne Salzburg (Austria, 2015), then traveled to the Museum für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main (Germany, 2017) and MoMA PS1 (New York, 2017). Her work has also been the subject of exhibitions at the Musée départemental d’art contemporain de Rochechouart (France), the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León (Spain), and the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art, State University of New York, New Paltz (New York). Her publications include Parts of a Body House Book (1972); Cezanne, She Was A Great Painter (1975); More Than Meat Joy: Performance Works and Selected Writings (1979, 1997); and Imaging Her Erotics (2001).
Branden W. Joseph is the Frank Gallipoli Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art at Columbia University in New York. He is the author of Random Order: Robert Rauschenberg and the Neo-Avant-Garde (MIT Press, 2003); Beyond the Dream Syndicate: Tony Conrad and the Arts after Cage (Zone Books, 2008); The Roh and the Cooked: Tony Conrad and Beverly Grant in Europe (August Verlag, 2012); and Experimentations: John Cage in Music, Art, and Architecture (Bloomsbury, 2016). Joseph has authored numerous other publications on artists, including Angela Bulloch, Mike Kelley, Jutta Koether, Lee Lozano, Seth Price, and Andy Warhol, as well as on such topics as music and torture (“Across an Invisible Line: A Conversation about Music and Torture,” with Suzanne G. Cusick, Grey Room, 2011). He was consulting curator, with Sabine Breitwieser, of the retrospective Carolee Schneemann: Kinetic Painting (2015) and is also founding co-editor of the journal Grey Room (MIT Press).