Deutsches Haus at NYU, Light Industry, and the New York Institute for the Humanities present a conversation between authors Ian Penman and Gary Indiana about Penman’s new book, Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors (Semiotext(e), May 2023), a kaleidoscopic study of acclaimed filmmaker, writer, and actor Rainer Werner Fassbinder.
Please note: Light Industry will present a reading by Ian Penman from Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors, punctuated by the screening of a variety of film clips on May 9.
About Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors:
Melodrama, biography, cold war thriller, drug memoir, essay in fragments, and mystery, Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors is cult critic Ian Penman's long-awaited first full-length book: a kaleidoscopic study of Rainer Werner Fassbinder. Written over a short period "in the spirit" of RWF, who would often get films made in a matter of weeks or months, Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors presents the filmmaker as Penman's equivalent of what Baudelaire was to Benjamin: an urban poet in the turbulent, seeds-sown, messy era just before everything changed. Beautifully written and extraordinarily compelling, echoing the fragmentary works of Roland Barthes and Emil Cioran, Eduardo Galeano and Alexander Kluge, this story has everything: sex, drugs, art, the city, cinema, and revolution.
About the speakers:
Ian Penman is a British writer, music journalist, and critic. He began his career at the NME in 1977, later contributing to various publications including The Face, Arena, Tatler, Uncut, Sight & Sound, The Wire, The Guardian, the London Review of Books, and City Journal. He is the author of Vital Signs: Music, Movies, and Other Manias and It Gets Me Home, This Curving Track.
Gary Indiana is a novelist and critic who has chronicled the despair and hysteria of America in the late twentieth century and on. From Horse Crazy (1989), a tale of feverish love set against the backdrop of downtown New York amid the AIDS epidemic, to Do Everything in the Dark (2003), “a desolate frieze of New York’s aging bohemians” (n+1), Indiana’s novels mix horror and bathos, grim social commentary with passages of tenderest, frailest desire. With 1997’s Resentment: A Comedy, Indiana began his true crime trilogy, following up with Three Month Fever: The Andrew Cunanan Story (1999), and Depraved Indifference (2002). In 2015, Indiana published his acclaimed anti-memoir, I Can Give You Anything But Love (Rizzoli).
For in-person attendance, please RSVP here.
The University's COVID-19 vaccination requirements – that all members of the NYU community, including employees, faculty members, students, affiliates, vendors, and visitors, must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and, once eligible, boosted – remain in force. This semester based on NYU guidelines, in-person events will be open to members of the general public, but all visitors must be prepared to present proof of compliance with the University's COVID-19 vaccination requirements if asked to do so.
“Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors: A Conversation between Ian Penman and Gary Indiana” is funded by the DAAD from funds of the German Federal Foreign Office (AA).
Additional thanks goes to Eric Banks, director of the New York Institute for the Humanities, and Thomas Beard, co-founder and director of Light Industry, for their invaluable support in realizing this event.