“Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.” — Oscar Wilde
This interdisciplinary anthology explores the complex relationships in an artist’s life between fact and fiction, presentation and existence, and critique and creation, and examines the work that ultimately results from these tensions.
Using a combination of critical and personal essays and interviews, MASKS presents Bowie as the key exemplifier of the concept of the ‘mask’, then further applies the same framework to other liminal artists and thinkers who challenged the established boundaries of the art/pop academic worlds, such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Oscar Wilde, Søren Kierkegaard, Yukio Mishima and Hunter S. Thompson. Featuring contributions from John Gray and Slavoj Žižek and interviews with Gary Lachman and Davide De Angelis, this book will appeal to scholars and students of cultural criticism, aesthetics and the philosophy of art; practising artists; and fans of Bowie and other artists whose work enacts experiments in identity.