The New Social Environment#515

A Tribute to Sylvère Lotringer

Featuring Charles Gaines, Paul McCarthy, Noura Wedell, and ​​Donatien Grau


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Artists Charles Gaines, Paul McCarthy, and writer and editor Noura Wedell join Rail Editor-at-Large ​​Donatien Grau for a tribute to Sylvère Lotringer. We conclude with a poetry reading by Eileen Myles.

In this talk

Read our tribute to Sylvère Lotringer in our March 2022 issue →

Charles Gaines

Photo of Charles Gaines.
A pivotal figure in the field of conceptual art, Charles Gaines engages formulas and systems to interrogate the relationships between the objective and subjective realms. He has been the subject of numerous exhibitions in the US and internationally, and his work is in prominent public collections including at the MoMA, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Studio Museum in Harlem, and LACMA. Gaines lives and works in Los Angeles. He recently retired from the CalArts School of Art, where he was on faculty for over 30 years and established a fellowship to provide critical scholarship support for Black students in the M.F.A. Art program.

Paul McCarthy

Photo of Paul McCarthy, courtesy of Hauser & Wirth
Widely considered to be one of the most influential and groundbreaking contemporary American artists, Paul McCarthy was born in 1945 and raised in Salt Lake City. He first established a multi-faceted artistic practice which sought to break the limitations of painting by using unorthodox materials such as bodily fluids and food. He has since become known for visceral, often hauntingly humorous work through performance, photography, film and video, sculpture, drawing, and painting. For 18 years, McCarthy taught performance, video, installation, and art history in the New Genres Department at UCLA, where he influenced future generations of west coast artists. He has exhibited extensively worldwide.

Noura Wedell

Photo of Noura Wedell reading.
Writer, scholar, translator, and mother Noura Wedell is an editor for Semiotext(e). She has translated six books for Semiotext(e), including texts by Toni Negri and Guy Hocquenghem and three autobiographical narratives by Pierre Guyotat. She edited Investigations: the Expanded Field of Writing in the Works of Robert Morris (Presses Universitaires de Lyon, 2015), and has published a book of poetry, Odd Directions (Opera Prima, 2009).

Donatien Grau

Donatien Grau
Head of contemporary programs at the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, Donatien Grau holds doctoral degrees in French and comparative literature from the Sorbonne, in philological and historical sciences from the École des Hautes Études, Paris, and a DPhil from Oxford University. He served as advisor to Azzedine Alaïa for the couturier’s not-for-profit exhibition space, the Galerie (2014–17), and curated the inaugural exhibition of the reopening of the Getty Villa, Malibu, Plato in L. A. (2018). He is an Editor-at-Large of Purple Fashion Magazine and the Brooklyn Rail. He has published widely on the arts and culture of the Roman Empire, on 19th and 20th literary and art history, as well as on contemporary art and culture.

The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poetry reading, and we’re fortunate to have Eileen Myles reading.

Eileen Myles

A black and white photo of poet Eileen Myles.
Photo by Shae Detar
Writer Eileen Myles came to New York from Boston in 1974 to be a poet. Their books include For Now (an essay/talk about writing), I Must Be Living Twice: New and Selected Poems, and Chelsea Girls. They showed their photographs in 2019 at Bridget Donahue, NYC. Eileen has received a Guggenheim Fellowship and an award from the American Academy of Arts & Letters. They live in New York and Marfa, TX.

❤️ 🌈 We'd like to thank the The Terra Foundation for American Art for making these daily conversations possible, and for their support of our growing archive.