Supervert Essays

“It does not matter how badly you paint, so long as you don't paint badly like other people.” — George Moore

Supervert's obituary for J.G. Ballard in Grimm

Supervert's obituary for J.G. Ballard in Grimm

Featured Essays

Horror Panegyric

"Horror Panegyric" is Supervert's essay on the Lord Horror novels of Savoy Books' David Britton and Michael Butterworth. Published in book form in 2008, the entire essay — along with excerpts from the novels — is available for free on

Sadistic Introduction to a Masochistic Book

"Sadistic Introduction to a Masochistic Book" is Supervert's introduction to the Bookkake edition of Leopold von Sacher-Masoch's classic Venus in Furs, published in book form in 2008.

Perversion and Terror

Written in the month following the terror attacks of 9/11/2001, "Perversion and Terror" ponders the role of perversion in a world of terror.

Writings about Contemporary Art

A small selection of writings about contemporary art produced for New York magazines in the 1990s (before the incorporation of Supervert in 1999).

Matthew Barney and Beyond

Analysis of the work of Matthew Barney in terms of power, askesis, impedance, force, and sliminess

John Currin's Nudes

The nude and its paradoxes in the work of contemporary artist John Currin. You may also read this in español: Desnudos de John Currin

John Currin: Boomerang

Analysis of the "weirdness," sexism, and painterly virtuosity of Currin's painting. Also includes an interview with the artist. This text was included in the monograph accompanying Currin's first major solo museum exhibition, in France and in London. You may also read this in español: John Currin: Boomerang

Vanessa Beecroft: Classic Cruelty

Description of the implicit cruelty that occurs when transposing classical art-making techniques to live subjects, as in the work of Vanessa Beecroft

Joel-Peter Witkin

Review of an exhibition featuring the necrotic photographs of Joel-Peter Witkin

Rudolf Schwarzkogler

Review of an exhibition documenting the sadomasochistic performances of this seminal Viennese performance artist

Animal Sex Machines

Bestiality in the history of art and particularly in two mechanized works by contemporary artists Paul McCarthy and Mat Collishaw