Prudence Peiffer’s “The Slip: The New York City Street That Changed American Art Forever”
By LARB Radio HourAugust 25, 2023
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Writer, editor, and art historian Prudence Peiffer joins Kate Wolf to speak about her first book, The Slip: The New York City Street That Changed American Art Forever. The book is a group biography of a collection of luminous American artists including Agnes Martin, Ellsworth Kelly, Robert Indiana, James Rosenquist and Jack Youngerman, as well as his wife, the French actress and filmmaker, Delphine Seyrig. From the late 1950s to the middle of the 1960s, all of them happened to live in the same place: a collection of former sail-making warehouses on Coenties Slip, a dead end street in one of the oldest sections of Manhattan, right next to the river. Rather than jostle their work into well-established art historical movements and categories, Peiffer’s book asserts place as the generative frame from which to understand these artists and the connections and influence between them. Though the community was short-lived, their support of one another, the collective solitude they found, even their rivalry, takes shape as integral to their development, and at least one of the reasons that their work survives today.
Also, Andrew Leland, author of The Country of the Blind, returns to recommend Darryl by Jackie Ess.
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