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Presence in a Space: The Flickering Contradictions of Martin Puryear

By Karen L. Mulder Essay

IN 1997, THE ST. JAMES GUIDE TO BLACK ARTISTS called sculptor Martin Puryear a quiet revolutionary engrossed in the business of eroding art-world oppositions. “I would describe my usual working process as a kind of distillation—trying to make coherence out of things that can seem contradictory,” he says. “But coherence is not the same as resolution.…

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Pixelated Glories: The Graphic Excursions of Kathy T. Hettinga

By Karen L. Mulder Essay

DESIGN IS ubiquitous. Design in its graphic manifestations is, well, frankly overwhelming. Streams of printed ephemera constantly assault us, from cherished journals, to the slumping pile of unread newspapers shoved behind an easy chair in the corner, to the blur of billboards, fliers, bulletins, and posters cluttering our horizon. The democracy of digital invention compounds…

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Allegorical Strays: The Art and Craft of James Mellick

By Karen L. Mulder Essay

AS YOU ARE A SAVVY and a dedicated reader, here for your delectation is a quick quiz in the pestering style of the SAT analogy, but more akin in spirit to Walker Percy’s Lost in the Cosmos: The Last Self-Help Book. If critics from the pre-modern period considered craft to be the opposite of art (craft vs.…

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