The 7 Days Art Columns
Peter Schjeldahl

ISBN: 0-935724-41-9

Our Price: $12.50
From the Preface:

My tenure as chief art critic of 7 Days, from the Manhattan weekly's birth in March, 1988, to its sudden death in April, 1990, coincided with a period of growing muddle and malaise in New York, a sense of all-around entropy that I noted in my first column and that seems sadly confirmed by 7 Days' demise (though the proximate cause of that event was the impatience of the magazine's billionaire owner). I enjoyed the job immensely. The experience of hitting the streets every week with my most immediately burning opinions and pleasures suited me fine, and any true New Yorker can tell you that dire omens are as often a goad as a deterrent to the spirit of enjoyment in our passionately perverse town.

At its best, weekly journalism seems to me a model of how to live in a city: with pried-open responsiveness to the fleeting moment (the moment, even, of overtaxed exhaustion). Column-writing, in particular, should amplify the non-stop, irascible, funny, serious talk that is the sweetest city music. "It was like every week you wrote a letter to your friends," artist Jane Kaplowitz has said to me. If it comes across that way, wonderful--keeping in mind that in a column the "friends" addresses are people you've never met or the unexpressed sides, hidden from you, of those you know. That's part of what distinguishes sitting down to write instead of reaching for the telephone.

Copyright 2003 Geoffrey Young. All Rights Reserved