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Hal Foster Fills the House

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By Ania Szremski

Fullerton Hall was packed last night as SAIC students, faculty and Chicago art lovers (and, possibly, some sadly misinformed comic book enthusiasts) converged to listen to world renowned art critic/historian Hal Foster describe his most recent scholarly investigations into the avant-garde. The talk was only an hour long and Foster’s presentation was, as he confessed, the impressionistic beginnings of a conversation as opposed to a polished argument, but the talk was still managed to generate enough sparks to dispel the dangerously soporific atmosphere of the lecture hall. Afterwards, a professor warned myself and my classmates that only someone of Professor Foster’s stature could get away with that “impressionistic” tactic (read: don’t try this at home, students!), but I found the talk surprisingly engaging and entertaining. Of particular note was the reinsertion of some very interesting Dada women into the story, as well as a charming rumination on one of my most beloved literary characters of all time: Odradek. I managed to meet with Professor Foster the next morning to talk a little bit more about this project and his other recent work, which will become fodder for an article in the April issue of FNews. Until that comes out, I will relay the fact that the scholar suggests we all read T. J. Clarke’s Sight of Death, so add that to your weekend reading list!

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