Art and Photography
The Story of Sex
A Graphic History Through the Ages
By Philippe Brenot and Laetitia Coryn
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Sep 19th 2017.
The Story of Sex by Philippe Brenot and Laetitia CorynOriginally published in French in 2016, The Story of Sex: A Graphic History Through the Ages has now been published in translation in the USA. It starts back in prehistoric times and gives an overview of the sex lives of famous rulers and ordinary people. Later on it addresses various issues in a more didactic way, reflecting the experience of Bernot as a psychiatrist and couple's therapist. The graphics are fun and cheerful, full of nudity and sex, but nothing very explicit or detailed. The basic theme of most stories is that people want to have lots of sex and do as many different
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The Incantations of Daniel Johnston
By Ricardo Cavolo & Scott McClanahan
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Jul 12th 2016.
Daniel Johnston is known for making music and art. He is also known for having a mental illness. His work is very distinctive and it has a lot of fans. The 2005 movieThe Devil and Daniel Johnston was a good introduction to his work. This new graphic novel, The Incantations of Daniel Johnston, is much more bizarre in its style.  It is a combination of art by Richardo Cavlolo and words by Scott McClanahan, and it packs a punch. The book tells a story of Daniel Johnston's life. The art is bold in color and style, psychedelic, and funny. The words are addressed personally to the reader, and t
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The Incantations of Daniel Johnston by Ricardo Cavolo & Scott McClanahan

Generation Dada
The Berlin Avant-Garde and the First World War
By Michael White
Review by Sharon Packer, MD on Tue, Dec 30th 2014.
Generation Dada by Michael White In this book, Michael White focuses on the friendships that forged the enigmatic and difficult to define avant-garde art movement (or anti-art movement) known as "Dada." He quotes Richard Huelsenbeck (1892-1974) who said that, "Dada is a club, founded in Berlin."           Whether Dada began in Berlin or in Zurich (at the Café Voltaire) is open to question. The exact specifications of Dada art are also open to question, for Dada remains "the most indefinable of the 20th century's counterculture movements." In spite of this ambiguity,
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Boy Stories
By Johan Willner
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Aug 5th 2014.
Boy Stories has a strong autobiographical element for Johan WIllner.  In his preface he explains how his photographs here are related to his childhood memories of his father's hospitalization for mental illness, and then, when the psychiatric hospitals closed, a move to other housing.  Most of these images are staged, but others are more authentically documentary of his father's current living conditions.  There is no indication of which are which though, although in most cases it is fairly easy to guess if they feature actors or people from Willner's family.  More are stag
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Boy Stories by Johan Willner

The Art of Medicine
Over 2,000 Years of Images and Imagination
By Julie Anderson, Emm Barnes, and Emma Shackleton
Review by Jacob Stegenga on Tue, Jul 22nd 2014.
The Art of Medicine by Julie Anderson, Emm Barnes, and Emma Shackleton Art has long played a role in representing aspects of medicine. The Art of Medicine is a coffee-table book which presents highlights from one of the world's great holdings of medical art, from the Wellcome Collection, a museum founded in 2007 in London. This museum is part of the Wellcome Trust, originally founded by Sir Henry Solomon Wellcome in 1936, now one of the world's largest non-governmental providers of funds for biomedical research. Sir Henry (1853-1936) collected a massive number of artworks, including books, sculptures, prints, and paintings, and the Wellcome Collection h
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The Body as Protest
By Korper Als
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Feb 18th 2014.
The Body as Protest, based on an Austrian exhibition of the same name, is mainly about the work of photographer John Coplans.  Coplans is best known for his remarkable images of his own body, made in the last two decades of the twentieth century.  In this book, there are two long essays discussing his work and putting it in the context of other photography of the body, mainly by men.  The second half of the book is a collection of plates showing the work of Coplans and other artists who also use their body in their work.  The two essays are substantial and theoretical. 
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The Body as Protest by Korper Als

Picturing Disability
Beggar, Freak, Citizen, and Other Photographic Rhetoric
By Robert Bogdan with Matthew Elks and James Knoll
Review by Ron Amundson, Ph.D. on Tue, Jan 21st 2014.
Picturing Disability by Robert Bogdan with Matthew Elks and James KnollRobert Bogdan is currently Emeritus Professor of History at Syracuse University. He has many publications in the history of photography. The publication best known in the Disability Studies (DS) community is Freak Show: Presenting Human Oddities for Amusement and Profit (Bogdan 1988). This is not the only study of freak shows by DS scholars, but it is very well known and well respected due to Bogdan's rich background and the extensive collections of photographs that he has worked with. Some of these he has arranged to have contributed to the Syracuse University Library. Freak Show is still in
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What Art Is
By Arthur C. Danto
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Aug 6th 2013.
Arthur Danto's philosophy of art is relatively well known at least among philosophers.  For decades, he has argued that Andy Warhol's carefully constructed copies of Brillo boxes count as important art, while the original Brillo boxes that Warhol copied were not art.  Danto's view has been connected by some to the 'institutional theory of art' that says (roughly) something is an artwork if and only if it is treated as an artwork by the institutions who run the art world.  But in his first essay in this book, "Wakeful Dreams," he distances himself from that theory, saying it has
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What Art Is by Arthur C. Danto

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