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The Art Writings of Darby Bannard

Post #1431 • December 14, 2009, 2:48 PM • 18 Comments

Alan Smith, a fellow grad student at the University of Miami, wrote this paper for a contemporary art seminar led by Dr. Paula Harper, who deserves a lot of credit for encouraging me to write. The assignment was to compose a ten-page paper about a topic in contemporary art. Alan, in an utterly characteristic move, instead wrote a 100-page paper presenting an analytical overview of thirty years' worth of Walter Darby Bannard's published writings. I shared a studio with Alan, and this sort of intellectual thoroughness is typical of him.

Converting the paper from a 1993 version of Word was not especially straightforward, and as such, I don't need the kind of copyediting that goes into WDB's original pieces in the archive. This is largely for general interest and for the benefit of John Link, who has kindly agreed to write a biographical foreword for the collected volume of essays that I will compile when the last few pieces are installed in the archive and corrected. There is just enough styling to make it readable - most of the work went into making the markup tolerable and generating the table of contents. Please let me do know if there are egregious errors.

Many thanks to Alan for granting it to the archive and for Dr. Harper for her tutelage.



Chris Rywalt

December 14, 2009, 3:54 PM

When I had to do this kind of conversion, I saved as RTF and then ran a bunch of Perl scripts over the result. Of course, I'm not sure if a modern copy of Word would even read a file from 1993 any more.



December 14, 2009, 4:40 PM

I had forgotten all about this, Franklin. As I remember the original digitized version was a mess, at least when I tried to work with it. This is very impressive. Thanks!



December 14, 2009, 4:48 PM

I finally viewed it from Gmail, which generated some unreasonable (but valid!) HTML but cleaned the cruft out of it. Then I fixed the HTML and hand-hacked the TOC. In a perfect world I'd mark it up as Docbook 5.0 and auto-generate the TOC and the endnotes, but I wanted it online today. The compiled volume will be in Docbook.



December 14, 2009, 5:56 PM

Well, that is beyond me, but wonderful that you did it.

What is "cruft"? Excellent word, but I never heard it before.


Chris Rywalt

December 14, 2009, 6:09 PM

"Cruft" is an old computer programming term. Basically it means all the junk code you don't need or care about cluttering up the information you want at the moment.



December 14, 2009, 6:19 PM

"therefembarking" = "before embarking"? First paragraph.


Chris Rywalt

December 14, 2009, 6:23 PM

John, John, John. Franklin may have intended specifically to keep me from copyediting, but the admonition goes for you, too.



December 14, 2009, 6:25 PM

No, that's a bad one. Turns out it was "therefore, before embarking." Not sure how it got into that sorry state.



December 14, 2009, 6:38 PM

Did you want us to note typos etc?



December 14, 2009, 6:38 PM

"BIBLIOGRAPHYBIBLIOGRAPHY" = "Bibliography"? (near the end).

Also, there is no need for the constant "Darby" in "Darby Bannard". "Bannard" would do fine.



December 14, 2009, 6:42 PM

Those are the two examples I needed. "BIBLIOGRAPHYBIBLIOGRAPHY" is actionable. The repeated references to Darby Bannard is not.

Incidentally, every chapter and section title got doubled up like that. So did all the superscripts, so the endnote references said "204204" instead of "204," all the way from number 1 to number 386.



December 14, 2009, 6:44 PM

Typos are egregious errors as far as I am concerned.

The internal link to Bibliography in the TOC doesn't work, either.



December 14, 2009, 6:47 PM

If you leave the repeated references to "Darby Bannard" in, it will look amateurish. Maybe that's the truth, though.



December 14, 2009, 6:49 PM

Got 'em. Thanks.

It was a graduate student paper, after all. I have enough editing on Darby's writing to be worrying about the infelicities here.



December 14, 2009, 6:50 PM

That sounded bad. The above comment was about my workload, not Darby's writing.



December 14, 2009, 8:17 PM

True enough. No offense taken, for sure.


Chris Rywalt

December 14, 2009, 8:33 PM

"I have enough to do wrangling this guy's insanity into one piece without worrying about spelling!"

Oh, wait, that's about the Darger papers, not Darby.



December 14, 2009, 11:50 PM

"I have enough to do wrangling this guy's insanity into one piece without worrying about spelling!"

I hope someone says that about me some day. Thanks F for the reader's guide to Bannard. I thought I'd spend a little time reading Artblog last weekend and I'm only adding more to the essential reading list.



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