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Trotman's "Vertigo"

Dystopias I

I’ve been thinking about Bob Trotman, a sophisticated, self-taught artist whom I met this year.  Over the holidays I visited his sculpture Vertigoat the North Carolina Museum of Art: a larger-than-life guy in a business suit falls through space as if the bottom had dropped out; he looks surprised, terrified, and monumental. It’s the “monumental” […]

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Plate VII, 1761

Prisons of the Imagination

I’ve been working on a story about prisons. As I investigate the history of crime and punishment in Western society, I’m struck by the influence of G.B. Piranesi’s famous renderings: everybody refers to these, cites them, uses them in a frontispiece. (more…)

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