In the 1960s] Madeline Gins… was exploring states of extreme influence, even possession, by literary language. Her way of “deal[ing] with” the displacement of her self by an influx of words was to write in the very space of delay and estrangement that reading and writing produce, to continue this delay, this interruption. She seemed truly not to aspire to any sort of fixed meaning—or, rather, to aspire to unfixing meaning—even as she was quite insistent that she wrote in the novel form. — Lucy Ives
Madeline Gins was marooned here, on Earth, and made the best of it, using what was available to her, like words. This book is a splendid testament to how far she pushed them, and us, to realize what she already knew. That this, all this, is not it. Not. Even. Close. — Paul Chan
The new anthology THE SADDEST THING IS THAT I HAVE HAD TO USE WORDS: A MADELINEGINSREADER—published by Siglio—”brings never-before-published poems and essays together with a complete facsimile reproduction of Gins’ WORD RAIN (or A Discursive Introduction to the Intimate Philosophical Investigations of G,R,E,T,A, G,A,R,B,O, It Says) (1969), along with substantial excerpts from her two later books What the President Will Say and Do!! (1984) and Helen Kelleror Arakawa (1994). Long out of print or unpublished, Gins’s poems and prose form a powerful corpus of experimental literature, one which is sure to upend existing narratives of American poetics.”*
If [Peter Zumthor’s] new design is built, LACMA can no longer be associated with other encyclopedic museums in the United States that shaped their collections in the 19th and 20th centuries, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Chicago Art Institute, and the Detroit Institute of Arts Museum. Zumthor’s diminished plan would force it to shed the encyclopedic collections that are the very soul of the museum. It commits the original architectural sin of narcissism, of architecture for the sake of architecture.
This let-the-public-chew-concrete moment is all the more shameful because LACMA has gone ahead with demolition just as COVID-19 has taken over the country, state, county, and city, closing down all but essential activities. The administrations of two other museums under construction in Los Angeles — the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures and the LucasMuseum of Narrative Art in Exposition Park — have had the common decency to stop construction, admitting they are non-essential projects, and, hence, not worth risking the health of construction workers. Under the phony pretense that it suddenly cares for the public after having ignored public opinion for over a decade, LACMA claims its intent is to infuse (mostly public) money into the local economy, as though suddenly this deeply selfish boondoggle had an altruistic purpose: job creation. — Joseph Giovannini*
As an imaginary counter to what Giovannini calls LACMA director MichaelGovan’s “fait accompli,” the Citizens’ Brigade to Save LACMA accepted proposals from twenty-eight international architectural firms and collections, choosing six final designs in two categories: “Existing Buildings” and “Ground Up.”
The six designs are by Barkow Leibinger, Berlin, with Lillian Montalvo Landscape Design; Coop Himmelb(l)au, Vienna; Kaya Design, London; Paul Murdoch Architects, Los Angeles; Reiser + Umemoto, New York City; and TheeAe (The Evolved Architectural Eclectic), Hong Kong.
The Feminist Architecture Collaborative—Virginia Black, Gabrielle Printz, and Rosana Elkhatib—is “interested in designed ways of being: a woman, a citizen, a patient, a pile of compost. They approach these states as unstable constitutions, taking inventory of the matter and media that condition life under the law, capital, and a protracted hetero-patriarchy. What are the interceding artifacts, devices, and scripts that allow for survival under—and subversion of—such truly busted circumstances? Can we configure other realities from this mess with sharper critique and greater care?”
f-architecture has “sought something truer in fakeness, indulging in its delights (eyelash extensions, fake IDs and fan-fic) while also demanding closer scrutiny of the definitive measures that reify more powerful myths (the nation and how we belong to it, for instance). Self-authorizing identity documents, virginity simulations, and reconstructions of the clinic interior are among the objects of f-architecture s practice in reproduction. “
This week, f-architecture will give a talk at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, “illuminating several recent projects that center embodied experience and demonstrate ways of working through feminist critique.”