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Louise Lawler has devoted her art practice to investigating the life cycle of artobjects. Her photographs depict art in the collector's home, the museum, the auction house, and thecommercial gallery, on loading docks, and in storage closets. Her work offers a sustained meditationon the strategies of display that shape art's reception and distribution. The cumulative effect ofLawler's photographs is a silent insistence that context is the primary shaper of art's meaning.Informed by feminism and institutional critique, Lawler's witty, poignant, and trenchant photosfrequently pay attention to a host of overlooked details -- almost Freudian slips -- that ineffablyand tacitly shore up what we conventionally think of as art's "power." This book includes the earliest published text on Lawler's work; an examinationof her ephemera (Lawler produced, among other things, matchbooks and paperweights); a rare interviewwith the artist, conducted by Douglas Crimp; a conversation between George Baker and Andrea Fraseron Lawler's work; and essays by writers including Rosalind Krauss, Rosalyn Deutsche, and HelenMolesworth, the volume's editor. The book traces the changing reception of Lawler's work from earlypreoccupations with appropriation to later discussions of affect.