Sunday, September 15, 2013

Top ten books about 1970s art

Rachel Kushner’s new novel is The Flamethrowers. Her debut novel, Telex from Cuba, was a finalist for the 2008 National Book Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, winner of the California Book Award, and a New York Times bestseller and Notable Book. It was named a best book by the Washington Post Book Book World, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Seattle Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Christian Science Monitor, and Amazon. Kushner's fiction and essays have appeared in the New York Times, The Paris Review, The Believer, Artforum, Bookforum, Fence, Bomb, Cabinet, and Grand Street. She lives in Los Angeles.

For the Guardian, Kushner named ten of her favorite books about 1970s art, including:
The Andy Warhol Diaries by Andy Warhol with Pat Hackett

In the summer of 1976, Warhol bought a second Rolls Royce, an old, rare station wagon. He already owned a Rolls Silver Shadow, for which he paid cold cash but told people he traded it for art. This book of recorded phone conversations arranged as diary entries, which begin just after the purchase of the second Rolls, is important not for understanding the art of the 1970s but for understanding, instead, Warhol's total commitment by the late 1970s to money, fame, and socialites. Some people love this bitchy Andy. I don't. And yet I read and read, fascinated. Of Jim Jones's Guyana massacre, Andy laughs and says: "Just think, if they'd used Campbell's Soup I'd be so famous, I'd be on every news show, everyone would be asking me about it. But Kool-Aid was always a hippie thing."
Read about the other entries on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue