Esopus 15: Television (Fall 2010)

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The 15th issue of Esopus is devoted entirely to television, and features artists’ projects by Alex Bag, Dara Birnbaum, and Johan Grimonprez. Other contents include an interview with Lisa Kudrow and Michael Patrick King relating to their groundbreaking (if short-lived) HBO series The ComebackNorman Lear’s script notes from a crucial episode of Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman; 100 frames from Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s World on a Wire, a sci-fi telefilm the legendary director made for German TV in 1973; contributions from two renowned figures from the soap-opera world, director Larry Auerbach and writer Jean Passanante; a re-presentation of the late conceptual artist Keith Arnatt’s Self-Burial: Television Interference Project, 1969; materials from the MoMA archives related to a 1955 NBC show featuring the museum’s director, Alfred H. Barr, Jr., discussing modern art; an essay on the sitcom sofa by Mame McCutchin (with a removable poster featuring 64 TV sofas); and answers from Buck Henry, Liam Gillick, Louis Menand, Laura Mulvey, Lili Taylor, John Kelly, and nearly 20 other artists, writers, filmmakers, and musicians to the question “What Would You Like to See on Television?” Esopus 15 closes with an audio CD featuring new songs inspired by specific TV programs; participants include Stephin Merritt (Meerkat Manor), Cloud Nothings (The Golden Girls), and One Ring Zero (MythBusters).

Learn more about the issue here.