Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Explanation as Composition: Provenance #3

The provenance of this work was written during a collaborative writing session at LACE on 30 January 2011. Writers include: Amanda Ackerman, Harold Abramowitz, Kate Durbin, Sarah Shun-lien Bynum and Teresa Carmody. Event writer collaborators: Aimee Bender, Allison Carter, Mark Z. Danielewski, Carribean Fragoza, Veronica Gonzalez, Janice Lee, Harryette Mullen, Janet Sarbanes, Anna Joy Springer, and Stephen Van Dyck.

In 1922, the work came into the possession of Alice Lyle Adams of Chicago, the former fiancée of Bradney Right. According to the notes of a private investigator retained by Adams:

The work was wrapped lavishly and given as an engagement gift. When the engagement was called off (by her) she refused to return the work, which he claimed to have given her “in good faith.” She displayed it in the foyer of the three-story 1895 mansion she shared with her new husband, a lawyer. On occasion, the work’s former owner would stroll past the house, even though his own home was on the other side of town, in order to look in the window at the work. One afternoon in particular he stood outside for close to an hour, when the light struck the work most intensely, and he gazed at the work with an expression upon his face that had a peculiar quality to it — not quite sadness or devotion, but something in between. That was the last time he visited the work.

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