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Laurie Anderson Hardcover – September, 2000
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From Library Journal
Laurie Anderson, the high priestess of performance art/rock, gets the royal treatment in this gorgeous coffee-table-book retrospective of her acclaimed 30-year (and still going) career. Goldberg, author of the critically praised Performance Art: From Futurism to the Present and Performance: Live Art Since 1960, is the consummate performance art critic and chronicler. With Anderson's blessing and involvement, Goldberg wends her way chronologically through the art, writings, performance pieces, videos, films, and installations of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. The 323 illustrations, including 117 color plates, could have easily upstaged the text, but Goldberg's prose is delightfully intelligent and insightful. "The goal of this book," writes Goldberg, "is to present the full range of Anderson's creativity." Mission accomplished. This is a "bomb book" that will fly off the shelves; the alluringly bizarre cover alone (the finale from her 1983 piece, United States) is well worth the modest price. Recommended for all libraries; those with active performance collections should buy multiple copies.DBarry X. Miller, Austin P.L., TX
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The term performance artist isn't heard much anymore, but in its heyday, mixed-media artist and musician Anderson was the performance artist nonpareil. Beginning as a solo monologist and singer who used distinctive dress, props, photos, films, and electronic devices, Anderson gradually expanded the scale of her work. Since United States, completed in 1983, she has required other technicians, musicians, dancers, and singers to realize full-scale theatrical works, the latest of which, Songs and Stories from Moby Dick (1999), is the first employing a preexisting story. This album of performance photos and art, song lyrics, and monologues from her works affords quite an eyeful, which Goldberg describes rather than critiques. Lacking the sound of Anderson's voice, straight and electronically varied in pitch so that she can sound male and even carry on dialogues without hiring an actor, the book can't fully convey her wry and surreal humor or the satiric notes she expresses through spoken pitch and duration. Still, it is some book! Ray Olson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
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breaking artist. Laurie Anderson has impressed, surprised and fascinated me for over thirty-five years. After all that time, the depth and
focus of her mind and artistic/musical talents continues to lead the observer/listener into ever deepening journies into the human experience.
Laurie never seems to do anything which exists at only one level of meaning or observation. I look forward to sitting bolt upright in my
straight- backed chair, buttoning my top button, and getting ready for more difficult music and art. Thanks Roselee and thanks Laurie.
This book's major value to me is the validation of why L.A. -- and especially her live performances -- continues to intrigue and challenge me after all this time. Few artists in any medium have matured so completely yet unpredictably. This book catalogues her sustained growth while never falling into the biography trap of idoltry.
Unfortunately, since L.A. tours so infrequently it's difficult to study her creativity at close range. We're forced to make broad artistic assumptions about L.A. on very limited exposure.
Since what I want is more L.A., this book helps keep the flames buring inside my soul.
Ms. Goldberg not only unravelled the complexity of Laurie Anderson's works, but did so without jargonizing. She, instead, chose wisely to tell Laurie's story through pictures with extended captions. She was spare with her words--something few art historians can claim to do.
On that note, I better stop writing, myself....
I would have been a little bit more happy (and given 8 stars) if EVERY lyric, poem or shopping list Laurie wrote was here, but, well, I am asking too much.
Spend your money here, you won-t be dissapointed.