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Item Name: Painting
Title: The Figure of Writing: The Object of Text
Maker: Richard Gorenko
Year: 1984
Country: Canadian
Materials: acrylic on masonite
Measurements: overall: 122.6 cm x 81 cm
ID Number: PC85.3

Extended Label Info: Richard Gorenko’s The Figure of Writing: The Object of Text is sectioned into three parts, each section displaying a quote from three writers who challenge notions of art, the use of text, and mass culture in their writing. The top section is from Susan Sontag’s essay Against Interpretation (1966), the middle section is from Roland Barthes’ book The Pleasure of the Text (1973), and the bottom sections is from Michele Foucault’s book Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason (1961). Gorenko’s use of these texts suggests his own thoughts regarding how art and words are used and valued in society. Richard Gorenko (1954- ) was born in Canora, Saskatchewan. He earned a BFA from the University of Saskatchewan in 1979, an MA from the University of Dallas in 1980, and an MFA from the University of Calgary in 1982. He has taught painting, drawing, and printmaking as a lecturer, professor, and artist-in-residence at various institutions, including the University of Saskatchewan, University of Regina, Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (Prince Albert), University of Victoria, and Alberta College of Art and Design (now Alberta University of the Arts) in Calgary. Currently based in British Columbia, Gorenko has exhibited nationally, and his artwork is held in private and public collections.