John Waters on Tom Friedman
Condition Report: Adhesive residue on verso in lower left. Hinged and framed.
Signature: Signed in pencil in lower right on verso
Image rights: Courtesy of Heritage Auctions
Publisher: Published by the Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia
Tom Friedman’s sculpture is recognizable for its highly inventive and idiosyncratic use of materials like Styrofoam, foil, paper, clay, wire, plastic, hair, and fuzz. Working autobiographically, Friedman uses painstaking, labor-intensive methods to recreate seemingly random elements from his life. In each piece, he pays obsessive attention to detail, particularly in the replication of the objects that surround him. In Untitled (Bouquet) (2010), random objects appear to balance precariously on top of a studio crate, but the crate is actually made from Styrofoam and painted to look like a crate. “Art, for me, is a context to slow the viewer’s experience from their everyday life in order to think about things they haven’t thought about,” Friedman explains. “Or to think in a new way.”
American, b. 1965, St. Louis, Missouri, based in Leverett, Massachusetts