Wesselmann Tom – (Cincinnati, 23 februari 1931 – New York, 17 december 2004)

tomwesselmannBorn in Cincinnati, Ohio. Studied psychology at the University of Cincinnati and went afterwards to the Art Academy of Cincinnati, 1955-56. From 1956 to 1959 he studied under Nicolas Marsicano at the Cooper Union School of Art and Architecture, New York. First he was painting in the style of Abstract Expressionism, influenced by de Kooning. In 1959 he turned to experimenting with small, abstract collages. In 1960 he changed to painting objects and landscapes. He had his first one-man exhibition at the Tanager Gallery, New York, in 1961. In 1962 he participated in the exhibition « The Figure » at the Museum of Modern Art, New York. In 1963 he was included in « Pop Goes the East » at the Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, and in 1965 in the Young America 1965 exhibition at the Whitney Museum, New York. He was represented at the Sao Paulo Biennale, 1967, and at the Documenta IV and VI, Kassel, in 1968 and 1977 respectively. His exhibition « Early Still-Lifes » 1962-1964 began its tour of the USA at Balboa, California, in 1970. In 1974 his exhibition The Early Years: Collages 1959-62 toured the USA.
In the same year he was included in the exhibition American Pop Art, Whitney Museum, New York, and in Illusions of Reality at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, in 1976.
His work started with brash collages, assemblages and environments using commonplace commodity articles and modeled on advertising catalogs – usually combined with the exhibitionistic pose of a female body. In the course of his work on the series Great American Nudes he enlarged the format of his canvasses. Tom left us on friday December 17th 2004. But we will remember him as the last ‘Godfather’ of the popart scene.

study for bedroom-painting-1978

study for bedroom-painting-1978

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