Funny Weather (Hardcover)
Art in an Emergency
W. W. Norton & Company, 9781324005704, 368pp.
Publication Date: May 12, 2020
"One of the finest writers of the new nonfiction" (Harper’s Bazaar) explores the role of art in our tumultuous modern era.
In this remarkable, inspiring collection of essays, acclaimed writer and critic Olivia Laing makes a brilliant case for why art matters, especially in the turbulent political weather of the twenty-first century.
Funny Weather brings together a career’s worth of Laing’s writing about art and culture, examining their role in our political and emotional lives. She profiles Jean-Michel Basquiat and Georgia O’Keeffe, reads Maggie Nelson and Sally Rooney, writes love letters to David Bowie and Freddie Mercury, and explores loneliness and technology, women and alcohol, sex and the body. With characteristic originality and compassion, she celebrates art as a force of resistance and repair, an antidote to a frightening political time.
We’re often told that art can’t change anything. Laing argues that it can. Art changes how we see the world. It makes plain inequalities and it offers fertile new ways of living.
About the Author
Praise For Funny Weather: Art in an Emergency…
— James Lasdun, author of Afternoon of a Faun
A fine writer’s embrace of the artists who preceded her, friendly visits with their lives, and loving acknowledgement of their foundational contributions. A work of joy in recognition.
— Sarah Schulman, author of Conflict Is Not Abuse
I yield to absolutely no one in my admiration of Olivia Laing; her essays are magical liberations of words and ideas, art and love; they’re the essence of great twenty-first century literature: brilliantly expressed, wildly uncontained, willful, and wonderfully unbound.
— Philip Hoare, author of RISINGTIDEFALLINGSTAR