Contemporary art is deeply engaged with the subject of classical myth.
Yet within the literature on contemporary art, little has been said about this provocative relationship.
Composed of fourteen original essays, Contemporary Art and Classical Myth addresses this scholarly gap, exploring, and in large part establishing, the multifaceted intersection of contemporary art and classical myth.
Moving beyond the notion of art as illustration, the essays assembled here adopt a range of methodological frameworks, from iconography to deconstruction, and do so across an impressive range of artists and objects: Francis Alys, Ghada Amer, Wim Delvoye, Luciano Fabro, Joanna Frueh, Felix Gonzales-Torres, Duane Hanson, Yayoi Kusama, Roy Lichtenstein, Kara Walker, and an iconic photograph by Richard Drew subsequently entitled The Falling Man. Arranged so as to highlight both thematic and structural affinities, these essays manifest various aspects of the link between contemporary art and classical myth, while offering novel insights into the artists and myths under consideration.
Some essays concentrate on single works as they relate to specific myths, while others take a broader approach, calling on myth as a means of grappling with dominant trends in contemporary art.