Death of Art
by Chris Campanioni
**Check out DoA’s stellar review in the Brooklyn Rail!**
**And another review from Harvard Review!**
Death of Art dissects post-capitalist, post-Internet, post-death culture; our ability and affinity to be both disembodied and tethered to technology, allowing us to be in several places at once and nowhere at all.
“The future is trash. Recycling it, re-arranging it. Making it beautiful again.”
“Lately I had been thinking about writing a memoir because everything else I’ve ever written is a memoir while pretending to be something else and I figured it was time I did something else, which was a memoir. So much of my life is predicated on pretending or performance. Language had become another performance for me. One in which I could show off and show myself. At the same time.”
Chris Campanioni starts by cutting out his face in every fashion editorial he’s ever been in. The confession begins. Unless it’s another performance, moving from the Lower East Side in 2015 to the Cannes film festival in 2011, Beverly Hills 90210 and the Day-Glo gaze of the Late Eighties and Early Nineties. The quality of a photograph is called into question in a culture that is oversaturated with them. The desire for image to be replaced by a different, more symbolic charge of the written text and physical utterance is a call to restore faith in art’s sustainability. Death meets birth for its eventual renewal.
In re-evaluating the genre, Campanioni also re-evaluates our cultural capital, as well as our current modes of interaction and intimacy, exploring narcissism through the lens of self-effacement, pop culture, the cult of celebrity, and the value or function of art and (lost and) found art objects.
“Campanioni’s writing is playful, unflinching. His prose is poetic and his poetry often prosaic (in both senses of the word). It is a much-needed reminder of our endless potential for duality, in a world that too often suggests only polarity is possible.”
“Cuban-American writer Chris Campanioni’s new work is billed as non-fiction, but serves as much more. A dancey mashup of poetry and hybrid prose reminiscent of Maggie Nelson’s Bluets, Death of Art is a genre-bending glimpse into what feels like Campanioni’s private diary.”
“In Death of Art, Campanioni re-evaluates intimacy and narcissism in 2016—not just its mode and function, but how we think about and value each—and he does so in unexpected and unusual ways.”
–The Brooklyn Rail
“Campanioni’s writing has a really hypnotic rhythm. Something very Donald Antrim to this, except Donald Antrim isn’t in his twenties writing for the next generation of readers.”
–The Wrong Quarterly
“Campanioni offers us references and reflections on city life, highlighting the tension between being in an environment filled with anonymous potential and the highwire act of maintaining intimacy in a world where every thought can be recorded and published for everyone to see in an instant.”
“Campanioni’s use of question and insight and the overall humanity of this work is beautiful and impressive.”
– Saw Palm
“Campanioni’s style is awesome. It’s like Bolaño meets DeLillo meets Borges, which is everything I ever want out of a reading experience.”
– Red Fez
“Campanioni’s poetry is poignant and honest, possessing a sincere (if skeptical) romanticism that is necessary yet rare in the 21st Century. These poems stand the test of time.”
“A strong but delicate linguistic tour de force.”
“Chris Campanioni may, for better or worse, be the voice of our generation in which the internet is our stomping ground…”
– Your Impossible Voice
Read a review from Your Impossible Voice. Here’s a glimpse:
“Throughout the text, Campanioni references popular culture from Beverly Hills, 90210 to the 1990s hit film, While You Were Sleeping, and shares his personal experiences with them through stories of his own, reminding us that we are all a part of a nesting egg of audience – participant – audience – participant. We are as much a part of Campanioni’s life merely by reading his words as he is a part of ours, and experiences are shared, privately as well as publicly.”
Read the New Pages Review Here
Nomadic Press Has A Take
Tahoma Literary Review writes about Death of Art here. Scroll down for the review.