The Curator’s Cut – Book Talk

Kenneth Goldsmith doesn’t care if you read his books:

My books are impossible to read straight through. In fact, every time I have to proofread them before sending them off to the publisher, I fall asleep repeatedly. You really don’t need to read my books to get the idea of what they’re like; you just need to know the general concept.

I don’t expect you to even read my books cover to cover…. I like the idea that you can know each of my books in one sentence…there’s the book of every word I spoke for a week unedited…Or the book of every move my body made over the course of a day…Or my most recent book, Day, in which I retyped a day’s copy of the New York Times and published it as a 900 page book. Now you know what I do without ever having to have read a word of it.

So how do we have a Book Talk about a book the author declares you don’t need to read?

Emily Gastineau and Billy Mullaney — who in their spare time go by Fire Drill — will host a Book Talk on April 29 focusing on the work of conceptual poet Kenneth Goldsmith. Goldsmith is a writer we find incredibly exciting and equally dickish — and we’ll talk about his process of “uncreativity” and how his work can possibly speak to other performance practices.

As Mr. Goldsmith himself states, you don’t need to read the books, but we recommend the following resources:

THESE ARTICLES:
Being Dumb
Uncreativity as a Creative Practice
Being Boring

THIS DOCUMENTARY:
Sucking on Words

THIS CLIP FROM THE COLBERT REPORT:
Colbert Nation – July 2013

THESE COLLECTED WORKS ON UBUWEB:
Kenneth Goldsmith
Worth checking out just for the visual impact of the massive volume of text.

THIS ASSIGNMENT (from the essay Being Boring, above):
Retype five pages of a text of your choice and come prepared to talk about your experience.

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