TAKING A LONGER LOOK AT THE ART OF LISA YUSKAVAGE

_ B. Gerry Coulter

Lisa Yuskavage (47) is an American painter from Philadelphia who took her MFA at Yale in 1986. Since the early 1990s she has enjoyed increasing success in the art world: several solo shows in prestigious venues in recent years; her works reside in top collections (including MOMA, New York); and recently her paintings have topped the one million dollar mark at auction [The work Honeymoon (1988), sold for $1,024,000 at Sotheby's (New York) on May 10, 2006]. By any reasonable standard for "art world success" Yuskavage's star shines bright. I think her work is a success which is very much deserved as much for the discussions it has generated as for what is skillfully enacts on its canvases (oil on linen).

The "truth" about the art of Lisa Yuskavage is that there is no one "True" way to read it. Her ambiguous work generates multiple and intersecting interpretations simultaneously. It seems that no one who is exposed to her art is left without an opinion and I am no exception. This is precisely the strength of her work - it accomplishes one of arts most vital functions - it forces us look at it from more than one viewpoint. At a time when so much contemporary art fails to spark thoughtful dialogue Yuskavage makes paintings that tell us a great deal about ourselves. What I (or you) think about her art says as much to the world about ourselves and our limitations as it does about what she paints.

This essay is the result of my own examination of her art and how its thought provoking nature speaks so well to our time. What is said about the woman who paints (mainly) female nudes speaks volumes about the limitations (and possibilities) for women artists in our time. In doing this I also locate Yuskavage's work alongside other notable painters and an increasingly hostile body of criticism which has been directed at her art. It is time for another look at the art of Lisa Yuskavage as well as the technique and process behind it.


1. Lisa Yuskavage. Day (1994)


II. Intersecting Interpretations

Reading art critics concerned with Yuskavage's reminds me that I live in a very conservative period when even the discourse of the art world is often limited by conventional approaches to women, sex, and the body. I am even told by the Public Art Fund website that Yuskavage makes "extreme depictions of women" (Public Art Fund, 2007). But Yuskavage's nudes are not really very radical at all for a place like New York. Images of nude or nearly nude women (usually made by men), surround me in art galleries, in magazine advertisements, in internet searches for everything from "flowers" to "tools", pin-ups, and especially when I am in Europe, in street advertisements. However conservative the times may be we do live in a context which one leading theorist has described as "ambient pornography" (Baudrillard, 2005:25). This too is one of the ironies of our times.

Among early responses to her work was the thought that we might find one of her paintings hanging in the mansion of Playboy founder Hugh Hefner. Others have noted that her paintings remind them of soft pornography but in a way that nudes by Ingres do not. This has everything to do with a contemporary element in her work - the positioning of figures and the lighting and colour tonalities. But when we look closer at images such as Day and True Blonde, Draped, we see that these are not the airbrushed and digitally collaged women of Playboy, other soft pornography magazines, or the advertising industry. Yuskavage's women look far more like actual women - imperfect breasts, hips and thighs that are neither exactly the same nor perfectly smooth. We also notice that the sitter in True Blonde, Draped, while positioned in a boudoir pose typical of the magazines, certainly isn't forcing a happy smile for the viewer. Yuskavage says she does not paint beauty but "the failure of beauty" (in Enright, 2007). It is quite possible that this painting represents a victim of a recent sexual attack (or at least someone living in a coercive sexualized arrangement). Her expression is one that makes us think long and hard about just what it is that she is thinking. While some may be aroused by her work I do not think her painting works as pornography is supposed to function. I think a number of Yuskavage's more vehement critics are simply quite uncomfortable with the female nude. Yuskavage engages with this problem well and her work really doesn't seem to be about sex does it? The more we linger among her works the less "sexy" they become.


2. Yuskavage. True Blonde, Draped (1999)

Indeed, in the case of True Blonde, Draped, the shadow falling over the right side of her face serves as an abstract element performing the role that abstract swirls of colour played in the painting of Francis Bacon. Like Bacon, Yuskavage uses this unclear element to posit that we can never fully know the mind of a sitter or any other person fully. Bacon said this was the case even when the work is a self portrait (Coulter, 2007). In an earlier painting, Big Blonde (1997), Yuskavage paints a very Bacon-like abstract swirl (of hair) sweeping down across the woman's face. This makes the woman more enigmatic and highlights an underlying menacing quality to the world inhabited by the women in Yuskavage's art. Many of her women look as exhausted as any Degas ballerina or the fatigued women who occupy Lautrec's paintings (see also Lovelace, 2001). The colour tonalities (the Romantic and Rococo sunsets of Etty and Fragonard come to mind), contribute to the sense of strangeness and mystery in her work. If you find the women in her paintings disturbing - as even some well established critics have - perhaps it is important to ask the same questions about the culture from which the painter, and presumably her subjects, come from. Colour is the vehicle of an invitation to stop and look closely and deeply. There are many things to find disturbing about our society today from any woman's point of view (and there is nothing for shock value in a Yuskavage show that will not pale in comparison to the pages of many magazines at the local grocery store).

So let us do that - let's look again at True Blonde Draped - look again at that face and body - is she 17 or 57? Is this an image of a woman at different ages shown to us simultaneously? Perhaps this is why Yuskavage has begun painting two figures in some of her recent works such as Imprint (2006). As Yuskavage suggested to an interviewer: "I would put out the possibility that there are not two figures. That there is one figure, one entity. It's the idea of caring for oneself or struggling with oneself" (Scott, 2006). Imprint is my favourite Yuskavage painting - so poetic in its representation of the two ages of a woman - the forty-something clinging to her youth which looks ambivalently on the older woman she is to become.


3. Yuskavage. Imprint (2006)

Day is also a long way from the hyper-idealized artifical woman of Playboy. I have known a number of women whose bodies are near to the idealized figures and blond hair of Playboy models (no one can actually attain the digitalized and airbrushed qualities of the magazines). Each of these women, who do not look all that different from the woman represented in Day, have told me that no matter how close a woman comes to the ideal, and no matter how much she attempts to disregard that ideal, she constantly find herself tempted to measure herself against that unrealistic standard. Day contains this element of self exploration which can easily degenerate into self-lathing. Whatever else this painting does it presents the possibility for a discourse on the power of the unattainable ideal Western culture sets for women. For me, the woman in Day is not revealing herself as in some pin-up pose, she is doing one of the things our culture teaches women to do - to examine themselves for imperfections. Yuskavage has supplied this image with several imperfections as we see when we look at it longer. It isn't long before those thoughts of soft porn or a pin-up dissipate. I do not know what Yuskavage intended in making these images but I am fairly certain of two things: 1) she knows that it is highly unlikely that I can read it in the present cultural context without thinking of soft pornography and 2) she almost certainly knows that if I look seriously look at the image it will make me think of several aspects of its context. One of these of course involves feminism and its response, since the 1970s, to representations of women in art. This is an especially fascinating aspect of the "Yuskavage effect".

Feminist art and art criticism began to take off in the 1970s and have made an essential contribution to both since that time (and who among contemporary artists makes us more aware of this than Yuskavage?) Yuskavage has grown up among Western feminisms and knows her feminist theory. As a provoker of thoughts, feelings and emotions Yuskavage is not unaware that any effort to represent the nude female body will meet with both predictable and unpredictable responses. One of the things her paintings do very well is test the degrees to which feminisms have grown as well as the continued growing pains given the enormous weight of misogyny and patriarchy in cultures around the world. I must admit that I am fairly quick to get my feminist hackles up at the sight of a sexist beer or shaving product commercial and I refuse to complacently accept the normalization of violence against women in my own culture (including the increasingly prevalent varieties we witness on the street). I have never felt that Yuskavage was a purveyor of sexist imagery any more than she peddles soft porn. That said, it is perfectly understandable how certain people of a variety of sexual orientations might find some of her paintings erotic. When I first encountered True Blonde (1999) one of the first things that entered my mind was "my... but isn't this quite an erotic image". However, when I looked longer at the painting a number of messages entered my head. I asked myself if this was an image of masturbation (an interestingly rare subject in oil painting? Yuskavage certainly goes far beyond the suggested eroticism in some of Balthus's paintings). One critic has written that such pictures embarrass him when he meets them in the gallery (Saltz, 2006) - perhaps that is why some critics do not stop and look more deeply at her work. If they did they could ask if this might be a woman protecting her sexuality from the viewer, keeping one of her powers and her pleasures to herself. If this were an image in a pornographic magazine then it is quite likely that the woman's sexual organs would be exposed and a much more explicit image of masturbation would be shown. In those images the woman typically looks into the camera with her air brushed misty eyes. But this woman appears rather introspective and her almost stereotypical (but as always in a Yuskavage), imperfect body is more like Day. Perhaps she is a magazine model - but one saddened by her occupation pondering other possibilities. Further, in most pornographic imagery she would appear in stockings and the black shadow line falling over her left thigh may indeed be Yuskavage's way of entreating us to think about that. There is also the title "True Blonde" which plays upon the old witticism that the only way to know the "true" colour of a woman's hair is to see her pubic area. In this case, we are prevented from seeing this area by the sitter herself. For all we know this may be an image of a woman coming to contemplate her own powers, desires, fantasies. Maybe Yuskavage's art is about the women - not the viewer!

4. Yuskavage. True Blonde (1999).
At the same time it is understandable how those possessing hard earned orthodox feminist ideas might arrive at the conclusion that this is an objectifying and exploitive image. But even if it inspires such interpretations is it not as likely that this is a highly sensitive image of a private moment in the life of a young woman? She isn't perfect, she alone (perhaps with her erotic thoughts), enacting one of the most common and natural of human activities. All the feminists I know masturbate. The scope of interpretation of her work is quite open. Some even see Yuskavage as a feminist (it certainly is possible to read a feminist position into her art) - empowered to do what men have always done - paint the female nude while being accepted in the art world. But this is exactly the kind of conundrum Yuskavage's painting constantly lays at our feet and the wonderful discussions and debates which swirl around her work - if we are willing to take our time with it. We deserve better than critics who hurry away from the knee-jerk reaction of embarrassment. If I were an editor of a publication reviewing Yuskavage's work I think I would be tempted to send out a woman writer to reduce both the amount of giggling and the embarrassment endured by some of her male critics.

It seems that whatever her motivations and intentions, Lisa Yuskavage has managed to be understood as a sexist and a feminist at the same time. On feminism she says "I see feminism the way I think most people do now. It's a civil-rights issue and it needs to be addressed that way" (Scott, 2006). For me this painter is no feminist as she eschews politics for fiction. In a recent interview she has said: "There's nothing more real than politics, and my work is not about what's real" (Scott, 2006). Regardless of this statement, I find it very hard to see her as either a feminist or a sexist. Yet, we must be cognizant of the impact of male art history on some viewers of her work and be respectful of other ways of seeing. There are many truths in any painting and Yuskavage's work is no exception. There are also multiple ways of responding to a painting intellectually and emotionally and while I may not agree with several of them, I find it rather difficult in the contemporary to say that this or that interpretation is entirely wrong. For me, if there is a message to Yuskavage's art it is one that Jean Baudrillard would understand. As he said of writing and thought - and I think this applies to Yuskavage's painting - the world is given to us as enigmatic and unintelligible - why cannot the task of thought (including poetry, fiction, painting) be to make the world even more enigmatic, more unintelligible? (2000:83; see also 1996:105; and 2001:155) Given the multiple and complex readings that can be applied to Yuskavage's work I think it is fair to say that she cultivates, intentionally or otherwise, uncertainty. The kind of pleasant uncertainty that stimulates debate and engagement with art.

Yuskavage's work, in relation to feminist interpretation, also raises an interesting question concerning the sex of the painter. What is Lisa were "Lyle" Yuskavage. If you had never seen her work before and I showed it to you saying it was painted by a man - would your response to it be different than if you looked at it knowing she were a woman? Perhaps one of the outcomes of not only of art criticism, but also women's art like Yuskavage's, feminist or otherwise, is that we will broaden our understanding of eroticism and art. If we cannot criticize Yuskavage for painting a female nude, then we should not criticize David Hockney for painting a young man masturbating Mo Nude (1968). If Hockney and Yuskavage can paint what they like, then what is to stop us from looking once anew at either Tamara Limpicka's eroticized female imagery or that of Francis Picabia (for an illustrated version of this argument see Coulter, 2007a). The difference is that it was next to impossible for Limpicka to get her works shown and that is not the case for Yuskavage. Yuskavage benefits from the feminization of the museum going public in a way that Limpicka could not expect. If anyone were to say to Yuskavage that she should not paint the female nude it would be an incredibly ironic message if it came from her feminist detractors - perhaps the same ones who lambaste the later (female) nudes of Francis Picabia and quietly endorse the censorial curatorial climate toward them.

I am also not about to suggest that we have reached a stage of women's equality in the art world but, as time passes, and as women demand to play on a more level field as Yuskavage does, it is possible that our view of eroticism in art will expand accordingly. After all, one of the ways in which feminist art interpretation has grown since the early 1970s is that it is now possible for a feminist to see how a lesbian viewer might find a Yuskavage or a Picabia erotic in a way not so far from that of a heterosexual male. One of the more salutary outcomes of the wider participation of women in art entails a broadening of how we look upon the erotic in art.

Among the best things about Yuskavage's work is that it is as likely to offend the orthodox feminist as it is the stereotypical "old white male conservative". Like many artists (be they writers, painters, photographers etc.), Yuskavage does not seek an empirical or a political resolution to the world in her art - but rather - a poetic one. Art makes strange bedfellows from time to time and that too is part of its poetry. Yuskavage is an enchantress who can startle and I think both roles appeal to her greatly. As for those who see her work as shallow or vulgar I think they need to also consider her technique - a lot more than pop-kitsch is going on in this woman's art.

III. Process and Technique

One useful way to assess Yuskavage's work is to examine her canvases carefully with an eye to her process and technique. Among Yuskavage's detractors for a number of years has been New York Sun art critic David Cohen. Cohen says that Yuskavage fuses "the aesthetics of Hallmark cards and the knowing rhetoric of the graduate school seminar" (2003). It is interesting to ponder how much more this remark may say about the man who uttered it than it actually may say about Yuskavage's art. Cohen cannot seem to get past the fact that Yuskavage is painting "breasts and buttocks" which for him remain "slick and silly" but to his credit, in my view, he does see something of Francis Bacon in her work. After suggesting who she may have slept with (do we still do that in art criticism concerning women or men?), Cohen then castigates Yuskavage's technique which he says is "derived from mid-twentieth century 'How To' manuals" and is "full of hackneyed short cuts and splashy effects" (Ibid.). Cohen also worries about the number of "fat women" in her paintings [some of Yuskavage's women are pregnant] but he does think that she is coming to tone down her "misogyny". What would women do without such men as Cohen to protect them?

There are other ways to approach her technique of course. One of these would be to look past the breasts and buttocks and the size of the women to her actual process and technique. As for the Hallmark quip I really doubt Yuskavage will be asked to design a Christmas set for them any time soon! Before I embark on a more sensitive reading of Yuskavage's technique and process readers should be aware that leading critics (one who admits that Yuskavage "is a solid painter") have warned that "conversation around Yuskavage's work has devolved into a totally bogus discourse about skill" (Saltz, 2006). I will leave it to the reader to decide if what follows is bogus. Yuskavage herself asks that we be specific in attention to technique as: "being a painter without technique would be like saying you're a pilot but you don't know how to fly a plane" (in Enright, 2007). Indeed.

In various interviews and statements concerning her work Yuskavage has acknowledged the inspiration Bernini and other masters of painting the figure. Responding to an interviewer who asked her about Bernini's influence Yuskavage replied: "I am really interested in the way things are weighted at the bottom. Bernini puts a helmet and rocks at the base to keep the work balanced. The difference is that, in a painting, you can take the weight out of the bottom and put it at the top. The 'weight' of color is another way of talking about color value, so when you use close value, as I do in these paintings, you reduce the weight of color". Yuskavage blends classical ideas with contemporary representations as well. In four of her earlier works she modeled them after soft porn images found in Penthouse magazine (the principle competitor of Playboy) (see Enright, 2007).

Like a number of the "old masters" she produces pictures at the rate of about five per year. Her oils are deeply thoughtful and very delicate paintings which have undergone meticulous preparation. When we look carefully they demand the sustained attention that a Rembrandt does. This is an aspect of Yuskavage's work that is also present in the painting of Odd Nerdrum. Skill in making is as important to Yuskavage as it was to Michelangelo or Raphael. She makes many drawings as well as three dimensional models as did both Tintoretto and Michelangelo. Yuskavage scrupulously attempts to keep at bay the unintended and this lends to her work something I am less fond of - their calculated quality. She is deeply concerned with light and distance for which she uses both live models and photographs before she begins to draw. The result is an amazing rendering of Rembrandt meets Etty and (subdued) colour field painting (Enright, 2007). With such concern for the craft behind making it is little wonder that some more jubilant critics have pointed to similarities between her work and that a host of famous artists - including Bonnard (and those mentioned above). It is almost an understatement, in the context of contemporary art, to say that she is "technically ambitious" (Lovelace, 2001). The marriage of high art technique and common subject matter also reminds me of Caravaggio. The contemporary element in her works also includes the way she brilliantly mocks the male gaze (if it can get past the initial embarrassment) (see also Scott, 2006).

When slandering Yuskavage's technique begins to lose momentum her harshest critics sometimes fall back on the fact that each of her works paint the same thing (women). Her work "is becoming repetitive" complains Jerry Saltz of New York's Village Voice (2006). Others have wondered aloud at her public talks if she may be stuck. Robert Storr has spoken to this charge saying: "if painting Mount Sainte-Victoire over and over was a problem, then maybe Cézanne was stuck, too" (Cited in Scott, 2006).

When we examine her technique and process Yuskavage emerges as a rather conservative painter. Like Odd Nerdrum she can be read as a very traditional as opposed to "contemporary" artist. She has told interviewers that she remained sheltered very much from contemporary art during her younger days and that she is infatuated with the European nude (Lovelace, 2001). In technical terms what I think we have in Yuskavage is a woman artist who refuses to leave the European oil painting tradition and its female nude behind just as she avoids escapism. When we take a second look at her work we find a very challenging artist who gives us much to think about concerning the women she paints. In these conservative times perhaps many people are reluctant to do this. It has been a hallmark of previous conservative times that images of naked bodies are sequestered away from public view for private consumption? It is to this second level of escapism where Yuskavage's art does its violence and the critics who are embarrassed to be in its presence in public make us aware of this, despite themselves.

IV. Conclusion

Yuskavage is a challenger and she is not put off by the harsh criticism her work has received in some quarters. For my part I wish those same critics who feel embarrassed in the presence of her art would ask us to look as empathetically at the young women represented and the woman representing them as they do their own modesty. I would rather focus on the emotions of the artist and her subjects rather than those of the critics. Carey Lovelace is one (woman) art critic who did provide a basis (eight years ago) for us to look at the poignant emotions in Yuskavage's moody domestic settings (Lovelace, 2001). Not many have paid attention to her lead as she tried to coax some of her male peers past the initial giggling responses in the gallery which were quickly recycled into very harsh written criticism in their publications.

When we are embarrassed by something it is sometimes simply an element of our immaturity showing through. And what an opportunity we miss for analysis when our first instinct is to be embarrassed. What if, the critic instead stopped to enquire as to whether or not what s/he is experiencing is what the painting is meant to problematize? Or to consider "what if the painter is actually asking me to think about what it means to look at women's bodies as a public viewer in a public space - rather than alone with a magazine or a computer screen at home?" Yuskavage suggested in a recent interview with Robert Enright that this is at least part of what she is doing with her work: "consider that what we're looking at is the exact opposite of what we think we're seeing. We are looking in on something that is purely intimate, rather than at something occasioned by the presence of the viewer?" (in Enright, 2007). There is much food for thought here.

To end I will say, and I can only address my own emotional response to her work here, that in between the lines of the writing of many of Yuskavage's harshest critics I feel a kind of misogyny against - not the painter - but the young women she represents. This is not to be found in the writing but it is how the writing sometimes makes me feel. It leads me to wonder if these critics (who complain that Yuskavage is obsessed with adolescence), really like young women very much or care about the thoughts moving behind the masks they wear in public. Adolescence is a concern for Yuskavage who recently told an interviewer: "It's the most powerful moment in almost everyone's life". It is here as much as anywhere that Yuskavage's work takes me some of its darker implications.

Perhaps in our Patriot Act, post-September 11, 2001 world, the critics (especially those located in New York), prefer their art on the lighter side. I have a feeling that if a pre-Raphaelite were to emerge in New York s/he would be highly celebrated at this time. Painters react to the times in which they live. Yuskavage has her way, the escapists have theirs. Robert Rauschenberg worried that every new thing he learned about art placed a certain limit on him. This is true of everything we learn no matter how useful or valuable it may be. Much of the negative critical response to Lisa Yuskavage's art reminds me of another woman artist - Jenny Holtzer and one of her "Truisms": "you are a victim of the rules you live by".

One critic recently said (not supportively) that Yuskavage was a good example of the Andy Warhol quip: "Art is what you can get away with" (Naves, 2003). The same may also be said about art criticism. In any event Yuskavage does not seem to be paying much attention to the critics and in her interview with Enright she also cited Warhol when asked how she felt about the critics. She said she hoped they spelled her name correctly and otherwise do not worry about what the critics are say - simply measure it in press column inches (Enright, 2007).

The fact that Yuskavage is a woman does not seem to have as much to do with the criticism she has received as have the women she paints. What an interesting thing it is to see the female nude in art history so deeply problematized by critics at the time when a highly skilled woman has emerged to paint them. Women have been far more likely to use performance, installation art, and photography to achieve what Yuskavage does in the historically contentious medium of oil paint. One thinks of Carolee Schneemann, Kiki Smith and Tina Barney who were also roundly dismissed in their early days (see Lovelace, 2001). Few women painters have worked with the nude as Yuskavage has done (Tamara Lempicka, Frida Kahlo, Dorothy Tanning, and Silvia Sleigh). There are also very few women painters who have broached this area of traditional male desire in a way that allows them the power to reflect on the female nude from either her point of view or that of the women in the paintings. Yuskavage has seized the opportunity and it is interesting that so many established male critics profess embarrassment or disgust in front of her canvases. Issues of sexuality and power are unavoidable in her images and perhaps that is another reason why her work is so unsettling to some.

* * * The website of Lisa Yuskavage's dealer David Zwirner: http://www.davidzwirner.com/ * * *



References

Jean Baudrillard (1996). The Perfect Crime. New York: Verso.

Jean Baudrillard (2000). The Vital Illusion. New York: Columbia University Press.

Jean Baudrillard (2001). Impossible Exchange. London: SAGE.

Jean Baudrillard (2005). The Conspiracy of Art: Manifestos, Interviews, Essays. Edited by Sylvere Lotringer. NewYork: Semiotext(e)/ MIT Press.

David Cohen (2003). "Gallery Going: Lisa Yuskavage" New York Sun (June 19): http://www.artcritical.com/DavidCohen/SUN6.htm

Gerry Coulter (2007). "Overcoming the Epistemological Break: Francis Bacon and Jean Baudrillard and the Intersections of Art and Theory" Euro Art Magazine, Number 5, (Winter): http://www.euroartmagazine.com/new/?issue=6&page=1&content=140

Gerry Coulter (2007a). "One Among Several - The Traditional Gaze Seduced. In Kritikos: A Journal of Postmodern Cultural Sound, Text, and Image (July, 2007): http://intertheory.org/coulter2.htm

Robert Enright (2007). "The Overwhelmer: An Interview with Lisa Yuskavage". Border Crossings Magazine (May): http://bordercrossingsmag.com/issue103/article/15

Carey Lovelace (2001). "Lisa Yuskavage: Fleshed Out". In Art in America (July): http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1248/is_7_89/ai_76332997

Mario Naves (2003). "Hurry Up, Please, It's Time: Banishing Fame's 16th Minute". The New York Observer) (June 8):http://www.observer.com/node/47648

Public Art Fund (2007). "Public Art Fund Talks: Current Schedule: Lisa Yuskavage" (May 3): http://www.publicartfund.org/pafweb/talks/talks-s07.htm

Jerry Saltz (2006). "Female Trouble" Lisa Yuskavage - New Work" Village Voice, (November 20): http://www.artnet.com/magazineus/features/saltz/saltz11-20-06.asp

Andrea K. Scott (2006). "Lisa Yuskavage: Flesh for Fantasy". An interview in Time Out New York, Number 577 (October 19-25, 2006). [this is also on web: http://www.timeout.com/newyork/articles/art/3954/flesh-for-fantasy

B. Gerry Coulter gcoulter@ubishops.ca
He is Full Professor of Theory, Art and Cinema in the Department of Sociology at Bishop's University in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada. He is the founding editor of the International Journal of Baudrillard Studies (www.ubishops.ca/baudrillardstudies ). His recent writings include: "Jean Baudrillard and the Definitive Ambivalence of Gaming" appeared in the SAGE journal Games and Culture (Volume 2, Number 4, December, 2007:358-365) - also available on-line at:
http://www.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/2/4/358.

His recent Article: "A Place For The Non-Believer: Jean Baudrillard on the West and the Arab and Islamic Worlds", appears in Subaltern Studies: http://www.subalternstudies.com/?p=476; An essay "A Way of Proceeding: Joseph Beuys, the Epistemological Break, and Radical Thought Today" appears in Kritikos: A Journal of Postmodern Cultural Sound, Text, and Image (May - June, 2008): http://intertheory.org/gcoulter.htm; and his quarterly column for Euro Art (On-line) Magazine: "Kees van Dongen and the Power of Seduction" (Spring 2008) is available at: http://www.euroartmagazine.com/new/?issue=13=1&content=156. A recent paper: "Baudrillard and Hölderlin and the Poetic Resolution of the World" appeared in Volume 5, Number 4 of Nebula: A Journal of Multidisciplinary Scholarship in December, 2008:145-64: www.nobleworld.biz/Coulter.pdf

Another recent paper: "In The Shadow of Post-Democratic Capitalism - A Fascination for China" appeared in Avinus - European Magazine for Media, Culture and Politics (November 21, 2008): http://magazin.avinus.de/2008/11/20/coulter-gerry-in-the-shadow-of-post-democratic-capitalism-%e2%80%93-a-fascination-for-china-20112008/ . Dr. Coulter's teaching has been recognized on numerous occasions most recently by Bishop's University's highest award for teaching - the William and Nancy Turner Prize.