Rhonda Lieberman sitting in front of a restaurant in sunglasses holding her dog.

Rhonda Lieberman

Reader, Writer, Friend of Animals

Selected Writing


Painting over the Dirty Truth

The rich fund museums to launder their reputations. Museums exploit identity politics to distract from the shady money funding them. In the art world, it’s all just business as usual.

The New Republic 2019

Projection Runway

At the premiere of Marina Abramović The Artist Is Present.

Artforum 2012

Book Reviews

Lust Horizons

Helen DeWitt's Lightning Rods is a workplace satire for the age of sexual harassment.

Bookforum 2011

Fraught Couture

A new biography of an elusive midcentury fashion legend.

Bookforum 2013

Front and back cover of The Rhonda Lieberman Reader

The Rhonda Lieberman Reader

In the glory days, Rhonda Lieberman’s Glamour Wounds kept me alive. And now, here in my happy hand is The Rhonda Lieberman Reader, a cordial, a nightcap, a pick-me-up, a doctorate, a masterpiece, an arcade, a laugh track, a symposium, a giddy acropolis. Vocally, she can do no wrong. She scissors capital into pieces, and makes art of the remnants, in stinging sentences that provide their own Mercurochrome. Be mirthful, Lieberman preaches. Prankster-intellect, she dispenses, heals, disrupts. She is one of the very best writers on art I have ever read, and I’m including Baudelaire.

Wayne Koestenbaum

90+ selected essays, many of which are not online.

And pet photos!

High praise...

Rhonda Lieberman is an unmatchable wit, a superb essayist, a prose stylist of rare felicity and power. She’s one of the shrewdest, funniest diagnoticians of contemporary America writing today. I’m always eager to read anything she writes, on any subject—this collection is a banquet of insight, high humor, and fabulous intelligence. She proves that you can keep your heart in the right place without suffering fools, which is really quite unusually difficult in the strange times we live in.

Gary Indiana

You can't begin any essay in The Rhonda Lieberman Reader (I counted 96) without immediately getting the sense of a brilliantly clever writer who also happens to be extremely vulnerable...serious and self effacing, hitting the nail on the head while banging it in from the side of the block and most often hilariously funny. Rhonda Lieberman does not miss a trick and never ceases to brilliantly (did I use the word brilliant twice?) analyze the more complex not to mention the most vacuous issues of our time... I have to stop myself from reading this tome, and it is a tome, all in one gulp!

Joan Snyder

What the world needs now is Rhonda Lieberman’s loving unself-conscious self-consciousness, an ethnic awareness that surpasses the identity anxieties of todays over-sensitive tribes with healing laughter.

David V. Forrest. M.D.

Falling somewhere between the new journalism and critical theory, Rhonda Lieberman wraps complex cultural critique in the readable guise of cultural criticism. Fusing the frivolous with the forbidding, she makes difficult ideas easy and easy ideas difficult. The perpetual outsider brought inside, Lieberman renders the knowable strange and the unknowable familiar. Simply put, The Rhonda Lieberman Reader is the most pleasurably demanding, demandingly pleasurable book you’ll read.

Kenneth Goldsmith

…But she’s more than just the art world’s Joan Rivers…With Lieberman you come for the wisecracks but stay for the content, especially her well-worded projectiles aimed at institutionalized hypocrisy.

Gilda Williams, Frieze
A collage of Rhonda Lieberman hugging some of her pets through the years.

Photos: Dana Byerly

The Rhonda Lieberman Reader is currently out of print.

A re-issue is planned for 2022.

Scenes from the Cats-in-Residence Program at Mission365.

Photos: Ethan Swann

Cats-in-Residence Program

Part purr-formance piece, part social sculpture, part design solution, The Cats-in-Residence Program integrates art and rescue to address animal overpopulation in urban areas.

Rhonda Lieberman

The Cats-in-Residence Program, conceived by writer/artist/curator Rhonda Lieberman, was produced in collaboration with architects Gia Wolff and Freecell (John Hartmann and Lauren Crahan).

The inter-species hang out debuted as part of The Cat Show at White Columns from June 14 through July 27, 2013. Further versions were staged at Real Art Ways, 356 S. Mission Rd, and Worcester Art Center between 2014 and 2016.

See the Cats-in-Residence site for more details and a full list of artists.

75 cats were successfully adopted!

Meowrina Abramovic is present

Download the Zine! A chonky 309 MB