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Laurie Anderson: About Time

Laurie Anderson: About Time

with Tom McCarthy

Friday, February 23, 2024
7:00 PM–8:30 PM
Sold Out

Time is one of the most impermanent forms of measurement that humans have devised to help manage life. Do you feel like you’re running out of time? Which way is time going? Are you able to stop time? If so, how? In a series of on-stage conversations, artist, writer, and vocalist Laurie Anderson tackles these questions and more to help us reframe the concept of time and perhaps our perspective on life. 

Laurie has invited a group of her favorite writers, thinkers, and poets to assist us in picturing new and different views of time.

In this second conversation, Laurie is joined by novelist Tom McCarthy, whose work has been translated into more than 20 languages and adapted for cinema, theater, and radio.

Arrive early to visit Laurie Anderson’s scent and video piece “Uncle Allen” in the Mandala Lab on the third floor. Then, meet at the base of the spiral staircase at 6:15 PM for a docent-led tour. All ticket buyers receive free admission to the galleries.

Other About Time guests include poet Jane Hirshfield (Friday, February 9), Buddhist philosopher and teacher the Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi (Sunday, March 24), and fiction novelist Benjamín Labatut (Sunday, March 31).


About the Speakers

Laurie Anderson Headshot

Laurie Anderson is one of America’s most renowned and daring creative pioneers. She is best known for her multimedia presentations and innovative use of technology. As writer, director, visual artist, and vocalist she has created groundbreaking works that span the worlds of art, theater, and experimental music. Anderson has published seven books, and her visual work has been presented in major museums around the world. In 2002 Anderson was appointed the first artist-in-residence of NASA, which culminated in her 2004 touring solo performance The End of the Moon. Her film Heart of a Dog was chosen as an official selection of the 2015 Venice and Toronto Film Festivals and received a special screening at the Rubin Museum, where Laurie joined in conversation with Darren Aronofsky. 

Laurie has made many appearances at the Rubin, and has been in conversation with Wim Wenders, Mark Morris, Janna Levin, Gavin Schmidt, Neil Gaiman, and Tiokasin Ghosthorse. She also hosted the premiere season of the Rubin’s AWAKEN podcast.


Tom McCarthy Headshot

Tom McCarthy is a novelist whose books are often structured around repetition, recess and delay, and reject linear models of time in order to explore the looping, jarring, out-of-sync temporalities that color late modernity. 

His first novel, Remainder, published in 2005 and recipient of the 2008 Believer Book Award, sees the victim of an unspecified technological disaster use his compensation funds to stage elaborate re-enactments of half-remembered scenes from his own past. His fourth novel, Satin Island, a 2015 Booker Prize finalist, presents a corporate anthropologist, overwhelmed by his inability to grasp, let alone sum up, his own epoch (or even to understand what ‘epoch’ might mean in an age of data-saturation in which all eras are available on replay), repeatedly fixate on the digital buffering symbol at which he spends much of his time staring, finding in it the ultimate icon for contemporary experience. 

His latest, The Making of Incarnation, published in 2021, is an unpacking of the history of time-and-motion study. In 2013 he was awarded the inaugural Windham-Campbell Prize for Fiction. Born in Scotland, he is now a Swedish citizen, and lives in Berlin. This is his first appearance at the Rubin.


This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.

The Rubin Museum’s programs are made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature.


Image credit: Stephanie Diani, 2023

This program is now SOLD OUT.

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Ticket Price: $35

Member Tickets: $30

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