Artist Holly Pester’s stories, poems and literary fragments are deliberately anecdotal, gossipy and fantastical. In the artist book Go to Reception …, a project co-sponsored by the Women’s Art Library in 2014 and the Feminist Review in association with Whitechapel Gallery, Pester uses anecdotes to generate a deftly observed and humorous collection of critical fictions, poems and partial images. Written in response to a project on the history of the WAL, the stories borrow from the library’s archive of personal correspondence, artists’ slides, administrative papers and posters documenting the 1980s feminist art movements from around the world. Poet, performance writer, sound artist and practice- based researcher and critic, Pester’s speech-based compositions captured in this unique publication retain their aural/audio shape, playing on themes of linguistic algorithms and error, everyday speech and humor. Housed at Goldsmiths, University of London, and founded in the early 1980s to collect documentation of women artists’ work, the WAL now includes materials from thousands of international artists.
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