“David Was A Big Sweater” — The NYT Profiles Karen Green, David Foster Wallace’s Widow

Dear Dr./Bolinas Lagoon -- Karen Green

The New York Times profiles Karen Green, David Foster Wallace’s widow. The article details Green’s new art show Sure Is Quiet at the Space Arts Center and Gallery in South Pasadena,California. The article is worth reading in full, of course (it’s actually quite moving), but here are some of Green’s own words from the piece, on Wallace and her art—

David was a big sweater, and I just remember the sweat marks on his pillow when I changed the cases.

. . .

I wanted to redirect my anger, which is useless and fuels nothing, by invading my own privacy and then covering it up.

. . .

There’s been so much chaotic conversation in my head . . . I’ve been thinking, thinking so much. I wanted to take all the chaotic stuff and make it quiet.

. . .

David could be the great artist in the household, I didn’t care . . . I’ve been accused by academic friends of not having the right dialogue with the art world — not being knowledgeable about what’s cool, what’s desirable out there right now. But I’d rather work at Starbucks and make what I want.

. . .

I kept making art because I didn’t know what else to do, and that’s what I’ve always done . . . I felt everyone else was so much more advanced in the grieving process.

. . .

I really was thinking about language, the power of it . . . The power of David’s work, for example, which meant so much to people. But when you get as sick as he was, everything loses meaning.

. . .

You can be charmed and fooled by language .  .  It doesn’t stop, but it’s never enough.

4 thoughts on ““David Was A Big Sweater” — The NYT Profiles Karen Green, David Foster Wallace’s Widow”

    1. Hi, JR,
      I don’t really know how to contact her directly (I suppose you could search white pages in California, but I’m guessing there are many Karen Greens). You could try contacting the gallery:

      1506 Mission Street (West of Fair Oaks)
      South Pasadena, CA 91030

      Perhaps they would forward any message you had for her.


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