Draw Your Weapons - Sarah Sentilles

Staff Pick

“Thinking is my fighting,” Virginia Woolf said, and this might be Sentilles’s  motto. Her profound and unsettling meditation on war and violence proposes many ways—writing, painting, making music, taking photos—to counter, if not undo, war’s devastation. Writing in the line of John Berger and Susan Sontag, Sentilles starts with the moral implications of looking at images of pain. She considers ethical problems of aestheticizing suffering and asks what good can be done for the victims by the viewer’s sympathy and unease. Yet without seeing exactly what war does, how will people learn to reject it as a solution? Writing in brief chunks, personal as journal entries, Sentilles tells multiple stories simultaneously. These concern a student in her art theory class who had served as a guard at Abu Ghraib; her grandfather, who was traumatized by his service in World War II; and Howard, a CO who was imprisoned for his refusal to serve. These profiles lead to discussions of Japanese American internment camps, lynchings, PTSD (and its foreshadow, the fear-driven anticipatory TSD), the inheritance of trauma by later generations, the use and sacrifice of animals in war, and artists’ appropriation of war images for art. While Sentilles, a former divinity student, closes with a prayer that the world be made anew, she knows the task will be long and difficult.

Draw Your Weapons By Sarah Sentilles Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399590344
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Random House - July 4th, 2017

Raymond Pettibon: A Pen of All Work

Staff Pick
Pettibon first rose to prominence designing the logos and album art for seminal ‘80s punk bands like Black Flag while self-distributing a groundbreaking series of graphic zines. The works in this monograph, spanning nearly 4 decades and a variety of mediums, speak to Pettibon’s genius in melding high and low culture into artworks that often include textual components, with quotes from philosophers, novelists, and politicians interspersed among his images. Pettibon’s treatment of subjects like baseball, surfing, George W. Bush, and the Vietnam War make him one of the finest contemporary visual artists illuminating the colorful, wacky, and destructive underpinnings of American culture.
Raymond Pettibon: A Pen of All Work By Massimiliano Gioni, Gary Carrion-Murayari Cover Image
ISBN: 9780714873695
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Phaidon Press - March 20th, 2017

Becoming Leonardo - Mike Langford

Staff Pick
Mike Lankford’s Becoming Leonardo might seem like a pure flight of fancy, but it does rest on the foundation of prior research and makes a serious attempt to dig through the layers of mythmaking that surround Leonardo da Vinci. It is indeed not a conventional biography, but Lankford’s wry humor, his sharp conclusions, and his pure brilliance when it comes to getting inside people’s minds will convince you that perhaps Leonardo himself would have enjoyed this one.
Becoming Leonardo: An Exploded View of the Life of Leonardo da Vinci By Mike Lankford Cover Image
ISBN: 9781612195957
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Melville House - March 28th, 2017