Archive Date: April 14, 2013
Archive Text: Alexandra Chasin reads from her books Brief, and Kissed By, and then she and Cathy Lee Crane will screen their 22 minute film, Composer and I.
In Brief, a funny, angry, hyper-articulate monologue, an art vandal makes a passionate plea to a judge: you, the reader. The vandal has been charged with defacing a masterpiece of modern art, and asks you to consider the following argument: Maybe the way we turn out is less the fault of our parents and more the effect of larger cultural and historical influences — maybe history is the real culprit. Rich with references to the high art, mass culture, political ideologies, and military maneuvers of the post-war era, from the Cold War to the introduction of television, Brief chronicles the formation of an art vandal, until the story explodes in an enactment of temporary insanity.
Alexandra Chasin received a PhD in Modern Thought and Literature at Stanford University in 1993, and an MFA in Fiction Writing at Vermont College in 2002. She is the author of Selling Out: The Gay and Lesbian Movement Goes to Market, a study of the relation between the LGBT “market” and the LGBT social movement, and Kissed By, a collection of short formally innovative fiction. Chasin is a past recipient of a Bunting Fellowship at Radcliffe, a Whiting Dissertation Fellowship, and a 2012 Fiction Fellowship from New York Foundation for the Arts. She teaches in the Literary Studies Department at Lang College, The New School.
Cathy Lee Crane is a media artist working in the fields of experimental fiction and documentary. She is in town as a juror for the ICDoc Festival and is proud to present her collaboration with author Alexandra Chasin at Prairie Lights. Composer and I is an adaptation of a short story of the same name published in Kissed By.