Tenth Avenue Art Club

By Elizabeth Hoover

Philip Guston, Barnet Newman, Willem de Kooning,

—all those guys trying to change art—

began by attacking the line, eschewing

horizons. I was on board from the start,

well in spirit anyway. I looked for planes,

blocks, or fields with my camera lens

but while developing I saw the line remains

at the center of the shot, refusing to bend.

Let me put it this way: obsession and fashion

get into a fight just as a grey-suited man

opens a paper by a yellow cab in motion.

Arc of roof, paper angle, shadow-band—

what’s success to reading funny pages in the sun.

Look at those angles. Bet you can guess who won.


Elizabeth Hoover is a writer who enjoys working on projects that have a conceptual or research element. “Club News” and “Tenth Avenue Art Club” are from The Enterprise of Seeing, a series of poems on the work of photographer Saul Leiter. A portion of that project was awarded StoryQuarterly’s essay prize, judged by Maggie Nelson. Her poetry has appeared in PankThe Los Angeles Review, and Folio. You can see more of her work at www.ehooverink.com.

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