As a senior in the Fine Arts Studio program, I work fluidly between a variety of mediums including performance, installation, video, sculpture, photography and painting. Beyond learning technical skills across these mediums, being a part of the Fine Arts Studio major has pushed me to evaluate my work in relation to the dialogue of contemporary art. I think that the majority of students within this major have a desire to approach their studio practice holistically, without worrying about defining the process of making but rather the context that they are operating in. As a result, the work created by my peers in Fine Arts Studio ranges from experimental audio, video, and site-specific installations to performances, collage, sculpture and beyond.
The books I chose for the Library's Fine Arts Studio display reflect both my personal research as well as those artists that I know others in my major are looking at. I think that the breadth of books shown is an accurate representation of the wide array of investigations happening throughout the studios of the students in the major. An important part of my own research involves looking back to artists from previous eras, while at the same time keeping up to date on the contemporary art scene in the States and abroad. The books Young British Art and Ice Cream: Contemporary Art in Culture have been influential to this part of my study.
A few books that I find myself returning to time and again include Joan Simon's Ann Hamilton, The Walker's catalog, The Quick and the Dead, and Joseph Beuys: actions, vitrines, environments. Besides looking at the work of fellow artists, a vital part of my practice and that of many of my peers in Fine Arts Studio is engaging with the theory and philosophy surrounding our work. I have found the entire series of Documents in Contemporary Art to be an easily accessible and comprehensive resource for this sort of critical investigation.
Another all-time favorite read is The Spell of the Sensuous by David Abrams, which I would highly recommend to anybody looking to explore the poetics of the body's sensory experiences in the world. My last recommendation is the recently published biography When Marina Abramovic Dies, which offers an unprecedented view into her personal life, early work, and collaborations.
Maura Kelly Doyle