Maria Hummel

marlene lopez

Maria Hummel is the author of Motherland (2014), an SF Chronicle Book of the Year; House and Fire, and Wilderness Run. She received a Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University and taught there for many years. She is currently an assistant professor at the University of Vermont. Of her latest book, Still Lives: A Novel (Counterpoint), Reese Witherspoon writes, “It’s a thrilling mystery that will leave you wondering which characters you can and can’t trust… There’s a twist at the end that still keeps us up at night, it’s THAT good.” Kim Lord is an avant-garde figure, feminist icon, and agent provocateur in the L.A. art scene. Her groundbreaking new exhibition Still Lives is comprised of self-portraits depicting herself as famous, murdered women―the Black Dahlia, Chandra Levy, Nicole Brown Simpson, among many others―and the works are as compelling as they are disturbing, implicating a culture that is too accustomed to violence against women. As the city’s richest art patrons pour into the Rocque Museum’s opening night, all the staff, including editor Maggie Richter, hope the event will be enough to save the historic institution’s flailing finances.  Except Kim Lord never shows up to her own gala. Set against a culture that often fetishizes violence, Still Lives is a page-turning exodus into the art world’s hall of mirrors, and one woman’s journey into the belly of an industry flooded with money and secrets.