Our first novel this year on our art writing course at gsa is don delillo's 'point omega' (2010), which starts and ends in an art gallery.
this thin novel begins and ends with a brilliant analysis of an art installation consisting of alfred hitchcock’s “psycho” slowed down so that it lasts twenty-four hours [by the artist douglas gordon]. delillo seems to be instructing the reader: “the nature of the film permitted total concentration and also depended on it.” most of this novel, however, is resistant to the reader’s focussed attention—it reaches for enigmatic profundity but meanders. the story follows jim finley, a filmmaker, as he attempts to persuade richard elster, a scholar turned war consultant living in the middle of the desert, to participate in a documentary about his life and work. elster floats big, inscrutable ideas; finley absorbs them, thinks about film, and flirts with elster’s daughter, who unexpectedly arrives in the desert, then disappears. the reader, troublingly, is left to chew on elster’s utterances: “a moment, a thought, here and gone, each of us, on a street somewhere, and this is everything.” is it? ♦ (the new yorker).
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