Selected Essays 1981-2001
by Peter Halley
EP 25: PETER HALLEY’S SELECTED ESSAYS 1981-2001combines, in part, texts from Collected Essays 1981-1987, published originally by Bruno Bischofberger Gallery, Zurich, in 1988, and Sonnabend Gallery, New York, in 1991, and from Recent Essays 1990-1996, Edgewise Press, 1997. SELECTED ESSAYS 1981-2001, edited and with an introduction by Richard Milazzo, includes such seminal texts as “Beat, Minimalism, New Wave and Robert Smithson,” “Against Postmodernism: Reconsidering Ortega,” “The Crisis in Geometry,” Frank Stella… and the Simulacrum,” “Some Notes on the Computer Landscape,” and several previously unpublished essays. Halley writes: “In retrospect, I feel that my essays of the 1980s delighted in the play of ideas; they were intended to be provocative, exaggerated and polemical. For better or worse, this body of work created some small critical position for myself as a writer. Throughout the ’90s, I have wrestled with my writing to avoid the entrapment of defending this established position, a prospect that I would find both dull and fruitless.” Within the general arc of post-industrial, post-humanist development, HALLEYaddresses the central issues of abstraction, not only in painting but in culture, formalism, modernity, communication and technology, architecture, language, and the role that human affect plays, if any, in society. SELECTED ESSAYS 1981-2001 gives us a picture of art, culture, and history that is uniquely HALLEY’S own – “preeminently analytical, perceptive, balanced, and visionary.”
PETER HALLEY was born in New York City in 1953. He graduated from Phillips Academy, Andover, and received his B.A. from Yale University and M.F.A. from the University of New Orleans. His paintings have been the subject of extensive traveling museum retrospectives at FAE Musée d’art contemporain, Pully / Lausanne, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; CAPC, Musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux; and Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art, Kitakyushu, Japan. Halley was the publisher of index magazine from 1996 to 2005 and was Director of Graduate Studies in Painting at the Yale School of Art from 2002 to 2011. In 2001 he received the annual Frank Jewett Mather Award from the College Art Association for excellence in art criticism.
First edition paperback, January 2013, 272 pp., sewn, bound and printed in Italy, with a two-color cover and a black and white photograph of the artist on the frontispiece with 18 black and white illustrations.