Greer Lankton: Sketchbook, September 1977



Sketchbook, September 1977 is an early journal by Greer Lankton written during her time as an art student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. It offers key insights into the artist’s mind before her move to New York in 1978, where she would go on to have a prolific career making lifelike dolls, theatrical sets, photographs, drawings, and paintings.

Containing drawings, behavioral diagrams, and occasionally confessional writing, the journal is a record of imagining the body and mind reconciled through transformation. In these pages, the nineteen-year-old turns an inquisitive, sociological eye toward the emotional landscape and somatic effects of her days recorded here—the time period leading up to her decision to undergo hormone treatment and gender-affirming surgery in 1979. Lankton reflects with raw vulnerability and keen self-awareness on critical questions of self-image, social perception, gender normativity, and human behavior.

The book also includes an afterword by Lankton’s lifelong friend, Joyce Randall Senechal. Sketchbook, September 1977 is one of the earliest of Greer Lankton’s journals, sketchbooks, and daybooks to appear in the artist’s archives housed in the Department of Film at The Museum of Modern Art. The majority of Lankton’s papers and archives are housed at the Mattress Factory, Pittsburgh.

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