August 31, 2022

Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts presents The Atelier@Large: Conversations on Art-making in a Vexed Era with Jennifer Egan & Michael J. Love

Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts presents a new year of The Atelier@Large conversation series that brings guest artists to campus to discuss the challenges they face in making art in the modern world. For the first conversation in the 2022-23 series, Princeton’s Howard G.B. Clark ’21 University Professor in the Humanities and Director of the Princeton Atelier Paul Muldoon will be joined by Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Jennifer Egan and interdisciplinary tap dance artist and 2021-23 Princeton Arts Fellow Michael J. Love. The event begins at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 13, in the Richardson Auditorium on Princeton’s campus. The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required through University Ticketing. Guests in need of access accommodations are asked to contact the Lewis Center at at least one week prior to the event date.

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The Princeton Atelier, currently directed by Muldoon, was founded in 1994 by Toni Morrison, Nobel Laureate and Robert F. Goheen Professor in the Humanities, Emeritus, at Princeton University. The Atelier brings professional artists from different disciplines together with Princeton faculty and students to create new work in the context of a semester-long course that culminates in the public presentation of the new work. Recent artists have included Stew, Laurie Anderson, the improv group Baby Wants Candy and the Wakka Wakka Puppet Theatre. The Atelier@Large series, established in 2021, is an extension of the Princeton Atelier that brings guest artists to campus to speak on art’s role in the modern world.

“There’s a notion still doing the rounds,” says Muldoon, “that art is primarily a source of comfort and joy. That it’s all about salve, maybe even salvation. For many artists the true solace comes through their acceptance that art is in fact most interesting when it is most disruptive. The change a work of art represents often seems minor, but it may have major repercussions.”

jennifer egan stands in pastoral setting and wears black hoodie

Jennifer Egan. Photo credit: Pieter M. van Hattem.

Jennifer Egan is the author of several novels and a short story collection. Her 2017 novel, Manhattan Beach, was named a New York Times bestseller, was awarded the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction, and was chosen as New York City’s One Book One New York read. Her novel A Visit from the Goon Squad won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Los Angeles Times book prize, and was listed among the best books of the decade by Time Magazine and Entertainment Weekly. Egan’s most recent novel, The Candy House, a sibling to A Visit from the Goon Squad, was published in April 2022. Her short stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Harpers, Granta, and McSweeney’s, among others. Also a journalist, Egan has written frequently for the New York Times Magazine. Her 2002 magazine cover story on homeless children received the Carroll Kowal Journalism Award, and her article “The Bipolar Kid” received a 2009 NAMI Outstanding Media Award for Science and Health Reporting from the National Alliance on Mental Illness. She recently completed a term as President of PEN America.

michael love smiles wearing navy and green collared shirts, brown glasses with long black beard

Michael J. Love. Photo credit: Cindy Elizabeth

Michael J. Love is an interdisciplinary tap dance artist—a choreographer, scholar, and educator— whose embodied research intermixes Black queer feminist theory and aesthetics with a rigorous practice that critically engages the Black cultural past as it imagines Black futurity. In Austin, Texas, his work has been supported and presented by Fusebox Festival, ARCOS Dance, Ground Floor Theatre, and The Cohen New Works Festival. In 2016, he received an Austin Critics’ Table Award in dance. Love has collaborated with transmedia artist Ariel René Jackson on video and performance projects which have been featured in or programmed by The New York Times Style Magazine’s #TBlackArtBlackLife series, the New Museum, CUE Art Foundation, the Galleries at the University of Northern Colorado, the Jacob Lawrence Gallery at the University of Washington, the George Washington Carver Museum, Cultural, and Austin’s Genealogy Center. Love’s performance credits include the Broadway laboratory for Savion Glover and George C. Wolfe’s Shuffle Along and roles in works by Baakari Wilder, as well as Andrew Nemr’s New York-based company Cats Paying Dues. Love holds an M.F.A. in Performance as Public Practice from The University of Texas at Austin and is an alumnus of Emerson College. As a Princeton Arts Fellow at the Lewis Center for the Arts, he has taught undergraduate courses including “Rhythm Tap Dance Lab: Explorations in Black Embodied and Electronic Music” and “Introduction to Rhythm Tap Dance: Past Legacies, Future Rhythms.” In December, at the annual Princeton Dance Festival, he will premiere a new rhythm tap dance piece created with students.

Paul Muldoon is the Howard G.B. Clark ’21 University Professor in the Humanities at Princeton, as well as the founding chair of the Lewis Center for the Arts. As an internationally renowned Irish poet, Muldoon has been described by The Times Literary Supplement as “the most significant English-language poet born since the second World War.” Muldoon won the Pulitzer Prize for his ninth collection of poems, Moy Sand and Gravel (2002). His 14th volume of poems, Howdie-Skelp, was released in November 2021 by Farrar Straus & Giroux. Muldoon is the editor of the recently released Paul McCartney boxed, two-volume set, The Lyrics:1956 to the Present, illuminating the stories behind 154 of McCartney’s song lyrics. His latest book, The Castle of Perseverance with watercolors by Philip Pearlstein, will be published in November.

All guests must either be fully vaccinated, or have recently tested negative (via PCR within 72 hours or via rapid antigen test within 8 hours of the scheduled visit) and be prepared to show proof if asked, or wear a face covering when indoors and around others.

The Atelier@Large conversation series continues with several guests this fall including:

  • Tom Stoppard on September 22
  • Gabriel Kahane and Anais Mitchell on October 11
  •  Jonathan Majors on October 30
  • Darryl McDaniels, Jennifer Homans and Iarla O’Lionaird on November 15

Learn more about the Princeton Atelier and the more than 100 public performances, exhibitions, readings, screenings, concerts, lectures, and special events presented by the Lewis Center for the Arts each year, most of them free.

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