During the pandemic, I have been thinking a lot about separation and division. When you open my front door, you’re given the choice of two doors. Turn left and you enter my studio space. Turn right and you enter my office space, a room filled with two sources of inspiration: my art collection and my library. The past few months I have struggled to balance those rooms. Buried between the stacks of books, you will also find a small television set which has lately carved out its own space, as I ritualistically watch the evening news while eating my dinner. Across from my chair is Emma Bee Bernstein’s Untitled (Self-portrait with red eyes), a photograph taken in 2006, when she was twenty-one years old. Bernstein, too, is seated, legs crossed, but without a table and only a beige hallway in front of her. She appears slightly below my eye level wearing a red silk bathrobe, black stockings and high heel shoes. Her chair-back is pressed up against the wall. To her right, a floor lamp with teetering lamp shade casts a wayward halo in her direction.
PennSound presents a full-length (83 minute) version of Henry Hills's film Emma's Dilemma (1997-2012), which had its premiere at the Microscope Gallery (Brooklyn). Kevin Killian has written an appreciation for this release.
Emma, Susan, and I moved to Buffao in August of 1990. I did these works in the following Spring, when Emma was turning five. Some of these xerox-generated pieces, an extension of Veil, and many of which focussed on my own hand-written mss and notebooks, were collected in Ray DiPalma's Hot Bird Mfg as Language of Bouquetsin 1991 (9 sheets, stapled at top). This set of work involved overpriting, rather thant overwriting, as in Veil. The two images here are quite different that the others in this series: I overlayed a drawing of Emma's over the printout of "Emma's Nursery Rimes." The poems, from July 1990, were published as part of a collaborative book with Bee, Little Orphan Anagram (New York: Granary Books, 1997) and later collected in Girly Man. Emma always said she wrote them.