Vital Signs brings together writings by artist Melissa Gordon, which she has performed live over the past decade in various contexts. Focusing on the role and behaviour of gesture in her painting practice and that of others, Gordon’s texts move between topics of dropping out, (female) genius, con jobs, how one ‘speaks’ in painting, and notions of ‘suckcess’.
Gordons’ writing emerges from a history of feminist organising and editing. Vital Signs shows the development from editor to writer to stand-up performer, and the shuffling and re-combination of the texts with each performative iteration.
The selected pieces – most published here for the first time – are accompanied by full-page details of Gordon’s body of paintings titled Female Readymades, where inventories of objects, texts, letters, and gestures hang on fences and walls inside larger architectural installations.
With an afterword by Páḋraic E. Moore.
Melissa Gordon Vital Signs: Writings on Gesture
Published by Occassional Papers in collaboration with The Frans Masereel Centrum
Softcover, full colour
218 × 280 mm, 112 pp.