The Museum of Modern Love by Heather Rose

The Museum of Modern Love

An Amazon Editors’ Best Book of December 2018 “Art will wake you up. Art will break your heart. There will be glorious days. If you want eternity you must be fearless.” —from The Museum of Modern Love Arky Levin has reached a dead end. Unexpectedly separated from his wife, he suddenly has the space he needs to work composing film scores—but none of the peace of mind he needs to create. As he wanders the city, guilty and restless, it’s...

Details The Museum of Modern Love

TitleThe Museum of Modern Love
Release DateNov 27th, 2018
PublisherAlgonquin Books
GenreFiction, Art, Contemporary, Literary Fiction

Reviews The Museum of Modern Love

  • Larry H
    3.5 stars, rounded up.Fans of 80s music, do you remember Hall & Oates' song, "Method of Modern Love"? The one that went, "M-E-T-H-O-D O-F L-O-V-E. It's the method of modern love..."? Because of a slightly similar title to this book (and nothing else), I couldn't get that song out of my head the entire time I read this! (I'm sure those of you who aren't familiar with the song are wondering what the hell I'm talking about.)Pardon my digression.Art ...
  • Diane S ☔
    Utterly fascinating. I love art, all forms, all ideas, and whenever I encounter a piece of artwork I like, I try to envision what the artist was thinking as he created. Oftentimes will find myself reading up on the artist, trying to understand. Marina Abromovic is a controversial figure in the art world, her live art has certainly drawn attention. Her expose at the MOMA in 2010, the artist is present, Drew some of the largest crowds ever at that ...
  • Robin
    What is art?I love "art", mainly in the traditional sense. The stuff you read, the stuff you listen to, the stuff you find in galleries and museums. I know less than I'd like. I never took an art history course. I haven't read enough on it. I just know with every fibre of my being how important it is to me, and, dare I say, to humanity.I'm more skeptical of modern art - little jars with a year's collection of pubic hair and toe nail trimmings? No...
  • Carolyn
    I'm not at all artistic and don't always understand art, in particular performance art, so it was with some trepidation I opened this book not realising what a treat I was in for. I had never heard of the famous performance artist Marina Abramović and her 3 month performance called 'The Artist is Present' at MoMA in New York where she sat absolutely still for 7 hours/day and invited members of the public to sit opposite her and gaze into her in ...
  • Bianca
    4.5 starsI wanted to read The Museum of Modern Love since it came out a couple of years ago. I finally got my hands on it, as I anticipate seeing Heather Rose this weekend at the Perth Writers Festival.I'm not the biggest fan of books that bend the line of non-fiction with fiction. But I am a huge art lover and I find Marina Abramovic fascinating, intriguing and quite extraordinary. The first time I came across Abramovic's name was by reading a...
  • Vanessa
    One of the characters asks...How do you define art? How do you answer that simply? To me it's something that is hard to pinpoint it's a feeling, it can bring joy, can cause confusion, it's pain, it's unadulterated happiness, it's an expression a way to connect with an audience it adds colour to dullness and makes people think, question and to look around the world with a different perspective. I love that it means something different to each indi...
  • Rachel
    The Museum of Modern Love is a tender and thought-provoking book. Fusing fact and fiction, it centers around a real piece of performance art that was showcased at the MOMA in 2010 - The Artist is Present by the Serbian artist Marina Abramović. It then weaves together the narratives of several fictional characters, all of whom attend the performance and become so captivated by it that they attempt to use Marina's art as a way to process the grief...
  • Jenny (Reading Envy)
    This came out in Australia in September 2016 and just came out in the United States this month. The author starts with the event of Marina Abramovic's The Artist is Present at MOMA and explores the artist herself (in a fictional way but with permission and access to materials granted by the artist.) The rest of the novel is made up of the lives of the people drawn to the art. Nothing much happens, and I loved it. Through the various character the...
  • Paul Lockman
    This is only the second novel I have read in 2017 but I knew within a few pages of starting it that it was likely to be one my favourites for the year. I could have finished it in a day but deliberately paced myself and took nearly a week as I wanted to prolong the enjoyment. I am not an art enthusiast so the fact that the novel primarily revolves around a real life artist Marina Abramovic and her ‘exhibition’ “The Artist is Present” in t...
  • Makis Dionis
    Μια πραγματεία περί μοντέρνας τέχνης. Μια τεράστια περφορμερ, κ οι δίνες γύρω από την τέχνη της κ την performance της - Η καλλιτέχνης είναι εδώ, στο ΜοΜΑ.Άνθρωποι που ανακαλύπτουν κομματάκια ποίησης στις ζωές τουςΗ ζωή είναι τα τραγούδια του Λέοναρντ Κο...
  • Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews
    *https://mrsbbookreviews.wordpress.comIn 2010 a unique moving art performance titled ‘The Artist is Present’ was performed by Marina Abramovic at MoMA in New York for 75 days straight. This unique modern art experience is the driving force behind the story The Museum of Modern Love.The Museum of Modern Love is Heather Rose’s reimagining of the highly acclaimed moving art performance, staged at the infamous MoMA in New York, performed by art...
  • Catherine
    I feel guilty for not having felt the way the majority of reviewers did about this. I thought I would enjoy it because art and history are two of my favourite things to learn about and this incorporated both, but I just couldn’t get into the story. This was somewhere between a 1 and 2, but if it wasn’t for book club, I would have ‘DNF’d’ it before it got slightly more enjoyable, so I think a 1 is more appropriate. Despite giving it a 1,...
  • Sarah
    I'm not even going to try and write a proper review of this, because I won't be able to do it justice. Such a unique premise - a novel following a handful of people whose lives become linked through (the real life exhibition) Marina Abramovic's "The Artist is Present" at MOMA in New York. The story explores art, love, life among many other things and is fantastic in every way. Just go and read it.
  • Leslie Ray
    This story is centered around an actual performance artist, Marina Abramovic, and is based upon an actual performance exhibit that she did at the MoMA, called The Artist is Present in which the artist and people sit and gaze at each other. The author has provided a backdrop to the story with characters who become intertwined in viewing, and actually taking part in the performance. They are at various stages in their lives but their responses to t...
  • Jerrie (redwritinghood)
    Wonderful story exploring the rigors of true commitment as it relates to love, grief, art, and the human longing for connection. Based around real events, the reader glimpses the lives of some characters who have come to see Marina Abramovic’s ‘The Artist is Present’ at MoMA. A delightfully thought-provoking, meditative read.
  • Anna Spargo-Ryan
    I liked this a lot. I'm a bit amazed it was written by an Australian -- something about it calls up the deep Americanness of authors like Franzen and Safran Foer. The white-privilegedness is probably part of that. These are mostly people who can afford to spend their time rubbing shoulders with celebrities at an art installation instead of going to work or being responsible for anyone else. That doesn't make the story any less interesting (not le...
  • Zena
    This book is based on Marina Abramovic who is a performance artist. Her piece "The artist is present" involved her sitting in a chair for 75 days and people sitting across from her. She didn't move, pee, eat, scratch, nothing. People from all around the world lined up and waited for hours just to get the chance to sit across from Abramovic. Some people cried, others were deeply moved and I was incredibly confused. This whole thing reminded me of ...
  • Mary D
    So bored reading this book. Very original, one star, at times some lovely, poignant writing, another star. But mostly I zoned out, took days to get back to reading it, felt like I was chewing the pages rather than reading them. Sure it rounded off nicely enough but win the Stella? Really??
  • Heather
    Approximately 15 pages into The Museum of Modern Love, I decided that it was a contender for my favourite new release of the year. Two pages later I became concerned that if I kept on reading that it would take a turn for the worse and I’d end up hating it; I contemplated putting it down and never picking it up again because it just started out that good. Thankfully I didn’t stop reading, it didn’t take a turn for the worse, and it’s stil...
  • Jaclyn Crupi
    I think it's easy for novels about ideas, art and artists to feel pretentious but Heather Rose manages to avoid that and she does it by delivering characters who feel so very real. Based around Abramovic's three-month long performance piece at MoMA, The Artist is Present, this book follows various people who visited or were involved in the piece. Full disclosure: I'm a huge Abramovic fan and may have stalked her in Geneva for a time (she smiled a...
  • Γιώτα Παπαδημακοπούλου
    Ήταν την άνοιξη του 2010 όταν το Μουσείο Σύγχρονης Τέχνης της Νέας Υόρκης φιλοξένησε την πολύ μεγάλη, μα και αμφιλεγόμενη, καλλιτέχνη Μαρίνα Αμπράμοβιτς, σε μία από τις πλέον δημοφιλείς και γνωστές παραστάσεις της με τίτλο, "Η καλλιτέχνις είναι εδώ...
  • Kate
    Some thoughts about The Museum of Modern Love by Heather Rose –01. This is easily one of the most original stories I’ve read. Ever.02. At first I thought some of the writing was a little twee. Then I changed my mind – it’s lovely.“When he was sixteen, his mother died. What do women who have drunk chamomile tea each night before bed, believed in invisible forces and played Chopin études before breakfast die of? A falling tree in a storm...
  • Calzean
    Normally books about art and artists lose me. Not this time. The author centres her story around Marina Abramovic's 75 day long performance piece at MoMA. Her central character is Arky Levin, a successful composer whose wife has made him make a promise he does not want to keep.There are a few other characters dealing with their own issues but it is all about Marina, her art and how it impacts on people.It is a strange book with a ghost who narrat...
  • Kimbofo
    What is art, and what is its purpose? These are the questions posed in The Museum of Modern Love, a fascinating book that blends fact with fiction, by Heather Rose.In this highly original novel, Rose takes a real life event and peoples it with interesting fictional characters who interact with a particular work of art, are changed by it and come away from it having learned something of themselves and of others.To read my review in full, please vi...
  • Philippa
    I'm already reading it again.Full review online at
  • Shelly
    Life's too short to read books you don't enjoy, but bookclub ladies can be scary if you do not finish what you start!And so under the premise of our bookclub mantra that we shall stretch our horizons and read books we would not normally, I stuck it out.To be honest back at university in my pretentious "I'm a well read and educated university student" days I probably would have loved it but these days reading is pure escapism for me.If you enjoy p...
  • Rebecca
    Feel like I must be reading a different book than everyone else, boring and just wasn't keeping me entertained . Wish I could've seen what everyone else found so fascinating with this book, but sorry I can't.
  • Nat K
  • Suzanne
    I won this ARC in a Goodreads giveaway - thank you Algonquin Publishing -- and have just finished a second reading to get my thoughts in order. I actually enjoyed it more the second time, the sure sign of a good book, and would give it a strong 4 at this point. Another sign of a good book: it helps you move toward a greater understanding.In 2010 artist Marina Abramovic brought her The Artist is Present performance to MOMA in New York for 75 days....