The New Social Environment#169

Fred Tomaselli with Toby Kamps


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Visual artist Fred Tomaselli will be in conversation with curator and Rail Editor-at-Large Toby Kamps. We’ll conclude with a poetry reading from Dao Strom.

In this talk

Fred Tomaselli

Fred Tomaselli
Photo by Erica Gannett
Drawing upon art historical sources and Eastern and Western decorative traditions, Fred Tomaselli’s works explode in mesmerizing patterns that appear to grow organically across his compositions. In the introduction to a 2003 essay on Tomaselli’s work in Parkett magazine, curator James Rondeau writes: “Over the course of the last ten years, Fred Tomaselli has established an international reputation for his meticulously crafted, richly detailed, deliriously beautiful works of both abstract and figurative art. His signature pieces are compelling, hybrid objects: ersatz, or maybe surrogate paintings, or tapestries, or quilts or mosaics. Their various components—both over-the-counter and controlled pharmaceuticals, street drugs, natural psychotropic substances and other organic matter, collaged elements from printed sources, and hand-painted ornament—are all suspended in gleaming layers of clear, polished, hard resin. Forms implode, explode, oscillate, buzz, loop, swirl, and spiral. Actual objects, photographic representations, and painted surfaces co-exist without hierarchy on and in a single picture plane. The combined effect, neither determinably real nor fully illusionistic, is at once electrifying and destabilizing.”

Toby Kamps

Portrait drawing of Toby Kamps by Phong Bui
Portrait of Toby Kamps by Phong Bui
Toby Kamps is former director of Blaffer Museum of Art, and curator of modern and contemporary art at the Menil Collection. He is now the director of external projects at White Cube Gallery and is an Editor-at-Large for the Brooklyn Rail.

The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poetry reading, and we’re fortunate to have Dao Strom reading.

Dao Strom

Photo of Dao Strom.
Dao Strom is an artist who works with written, sung, and visual mediums to explore hybridity and the intersection of personal and collective histories. She is co-founder of She Who Has No Master(s) and De-Canon. Dao was born in Vietnam and lives in Portland, OR.

❤️ 🌈 We'd like to thank the The Terra Foundation for American Art for making these daily conversations possible, and for their support of our growing archive.