The Sound of the Horn

Nicholas Frank


Book, 17,8 x 12,7 cm, 60 p., language : English, publisher : Green Gallery Press, ISBN : 9780982362006.
Materials: ink, paper

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. B 2028/373).

Literary synopsis

Milwaukee-based artist Nicholas Frank’s novella centers on a singular event that coalesces a town around its several competing versions of reality. Amidst the slow economic disintegration of the post-industrial American Midwest, the town (Eau Seche) struggles to reimagine itself. A late-night car crash, likely the result of drunken driving, provides just such an opportunity. Multiple perspectives on the event, however, threaten to rend the fragile fabric of the town’s belief in itself.

Relation of the novel to the artist’s practice

Authority, belief and consensus are the ideas that animate the various practices of Nicholas Frank. In The Nicholas Frank Biography, the history of the artist is recorded before it has been completed. As The Secret Choreographer, he invades the private space of closed exhibitions to see things as they are not meant to be seen. Shown originally with a set of paintings alongside an e-mail review of them by another painter, the studio floor that the paintings were painted upon (which is also a painting in itself), and a photograph of the view from the studio described on page 11 of the novella The Sound of the Horn invites the notion of constructed narrative as a lens through which to view the artist in his studio, as narrator of a semi-fictional story arc.

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