Francesc Torres. What Does History Know of Nail-biting?
Barcelona-born, New Yorkbased artist Francesc Torres (born 1948), a pioneer of installation art, is one of the most important European artists of his generation. In What Does History Know of Nail-Biting, which borrows its subtitle from Arthur Koestlers Darkness at Noon, the artist explores a body of work made by Harry Randall, a photographer and filmmaker who was one of 3,500 Americans who joined the International Brigades to fight in the Spanish Civil War. Many of the so-called Abraham Lincoln Brigade did not make it home, but Randall did. Forty-five minutes of 16mm film, shot by Randall between 1937 and 1938, becomes the material for Torres new limited-edition artists book, which explores what history looks like outside of concrete historical events, trying to capture the fragmentation and confusion that silently seeps through the official narratives of history.
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