“The Poet, The Critic, & The Interpreter: A Crash Course,”

April 26 2001

A public lecture under the title “The Poet, The Critic & The Interpreter: A Crash Course”

Angus Fletcher (Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Graduate School, CUNY)
Respondents:
Nico Israel (Asst. Prof, English, Hunter College, CUNY; critic, Artforum International Magazine)
and Victoria N. Alexander (Dactyl Foundation)
Hors d’oeuvres will be served at 6:30. Lecture begins at 7pm.


Dominick LaCapra, 2001 essay award recipient

2001

Award Recipient: Dominick LaCapra, “Trauma, Absence, Loss,” in Writing History, Writing Trauma (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Univ Pr, 2000)

In his essay, “Trauma, Absence, Loss,” Dominick LaCapra shows a sensitive understanding of the subtleties of deconstructive technique, and then, without refuting any of its claims, he advances the next intellectual step that takes us beyond postmodernism and into a Continue reading “Dominick LaCapra, 2001 essay award recipient”

Chaos in literature, science and art

April 4 – 6, 2000

Chaos in literature, science and art. Sponsored by Pfizer Corporation &Herbert Lee Grayson Foundation Panel Discussion:

Tuesday, April 4th & Wednesday, April 5th, 6pm
Angus Fletcher
, CUNY on Spenser’s “Mutability Cantos”and the poetry of John Ashbery

Thursday, April 6th, 6pm John Ashbery, Bard College, poetry reading
Jim Crutchfield, Santa Fe Institute, on the physics of chaos
Joan Richardson, CUNY, on science & poetry
Angus Fletcher, CUNY, respondent

In history, chaos is anarchy, mutability, disorder, chance, indeterminacy, flux, non-linearity, entropy, irrational thought, creativity, destructive emotion and the primal source of all that is.

Retrodiction

April 4-6 2000

Retrodiction  –The History of Chaos in Literature, Science and Art.

Retrodiction is a series of audio recordings designed for an Internet experience with visual, musical, interactive, and educational components. The series will explore the concept of chaos and the fundamental question: Do things happen by chance? or does nature govern by fixed laws? The goal is to increase public understanding of science through fiction, poetry, and philosophical writings. The project is a collaborative effort among Dactyl Foundation for the Arts and Humanities, the Santa Fe Institute, and the Art and Science Laboratory. Continue reading “Retrodiction”

The Interpreters: Shaping American Art, panel discussion

April 30, 1998

Panel Discussion:“The Interpreters: Shaping American Art.” Moderated by Steven Vincent, Wall Street Journal, Art & Auction. DACTYL asked five writers: Do your essays and reviews reveal or conceal your process of interpretation? As interpreter you shape the way art is perceived: as a self-evident sign or image; as a mysterious code that requires a professional interpretation; or as an “inkblot” in which one may find any meaning one likes. In your opinion, what is the best approach for engaging or creating a serious art audience? Over forty art professionals attended the discussion. Continue reading “The Interpreters: Shaping American Art, panel discussion”

Panel Discussion:”The Interpreters: Shaping American Art.

April 30 1998

Contributors include Carter Ratcliff, Rosie Schaap, Sarah Schmerler, Grady T. Turner, Alexi Worth, moderate by Steven Vincent, Wall Street Journal, Art & Auction. DACTYL asked five writers: Do your essays and reviews reveal or conceal your process of interpretation? As interpreter you shape the way art is perceived: as a self-evident sign or image; as a mysterious code that requires a professional interpretation; or as an “inkblot” in which one may find any meaning one likes. Continue reading “Panel Discussion:”The Interpreters: Shaping American Art.”

Stephen Jay Gould, lecture

April 23, 1998

LectureStephen Jay Gould and the Antioch Review, with an introduction by Robert S. Fogarty. Gould teaches biology, geology and the history of science at Harvard University, where he has been on the faculty since1967. Well known for his popular scientific writings, in particular his monthly column in Natural History magazine, he is the author of thirteen books, including: Ever Since Darwin; Evolution & Extinction : Eassys; Full House : The Spread of Excellence from Plato to Darwin; Human Evolution; Mismeasure of Man; Ontogeny and Phylogeny; and Why People Believe Weird Things : Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time. “The history of life is not necessarily progressive; it is certainly not predictable. History includes too much chaos, or extremely sensitive dependence on minute and unmeasurable differences in initial conditions, leading to massively divergent outcomes based on tiny and unknowable disparities in starting points.” -Stephen J. Gould.

Stephen Jay Gould

April 23 1998

Stephen Jay Gould and the Antioch Review, with an introduction by Robert S. Fogarty. Gould teaches biology, geology and the history of science at Harvard University, where he has been on the faculty since1967. Well known for his popular scientific writings, in particular his monthly column in Natural History magazine, he is the author of thirteen books, including: Ever Since Darwin; Evolution & Extinction : Eassys; Full House : The Spread of Excellence from Plato to Darwin; Human Evolution; Mismeasure of Man; Ontogeny and Phylogeny; and Why People Believe Weird Things : Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time. “The history of life is not necessarily progressive; it is certainly not predictable. History includes too much chaos, or extremely sensitive dependence on minute and unmeasurable differences in initial conditions, leading to massively divergent outcomes based on tiny and unknowable disparities in starting points.” -Stephen J. Gould.


Wai Chee Dimock, 1998 essay award recipient

1998

Wai Chee Dimock’s essay, “A Theory of Resonance,” which appeared in the October 1997 issue of PMLA, offers the concept of “noise” as a provocative analogy for interpretive contexts. Unlike many other writers on the same topic, Dimock makes the claim that noise is positive, “a necessary feature of a reader’s meaning-making process. Continue reading “Wai Chee Dimock, 1998 essay award recipient”

Steven Vincent, 1997 essay award recipient

1997

In his essay, “Listening to Pop.” Vincent demonstrates how the lesson of Claes Oldenburg’s work is distorted as it is reinterpreted today. According to the argument, representational art has reinforced the illusion of a knowable, static reality, while at the same time it has always explicitly deconstructed that illusion by its very nature of being artificial. Pop Art attempted to apply this lesson at large, showing how everyday objects should be seen as signs trying to establish an eternal logos. An important lesson indeed. But one that has backfired. As Vincent argues, these everyday objects have come to re-present themselves as signifiers of a signified, reversing Pop Art’s intention. They now “represent” the Mythology of the era in which they were produced. Vincent captures the eeriness involved in such a reinterpretation and reminds us how deeply invested the human race is in its will to believe. Copies of the essay can be obtained for $7 by writing to info@dactyl.org. Note: Steven Vincent was murdered in Iraq in 2006 for questioning political practices in a NYTimes Letter to the Editor.