Fred Tomaselli - Contemporary Art Day Sale New York Friday, May 16, 2014 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    James Cohan Gallery, New York
    Phillips de Pury & Company, New York, New Museum Benefit Auction, November 15, 2007, lot 6
    Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

  • Catalogue Essay

    "I grew up so close to Disneyland that I could sit on my roof and watch Tinkerbell fly through the night sky. Artifcial, immersive, theme park reality was such a normal part of my life that when I saw my first natural waterfall I couldn’t believe it didn’t involve plumbing or electricity.”
    Fred Tomaselli, 2004

    Fred Tomaselli’s paintings exquisitely fuse and suspend an array of found and unorthodox materials in a dense layer of clear epoxy resin, leaving behind an extraordinary opus poised between reality and the sublime. Having grown up in Los Angeles, during the 60’s and 70’s Tomaselli’s work assumes a particular psychedelic aesthetic simultaneously informed by the studio theatricality of Hollywood. The current work, Study for Tower of Peace Towers from 2007 is an intricate and laboriously crafted painting built from hundreds of collaged images embalmed within layers of clear epoxy resin. Tomaselli has carefully preserved the individuality of each component, using them as building blocks of the larger composition that encourages the eye to shift from macro to micro and back again. Adding new details to each strata of resin, and including flourishes of acrylic paint, he achieves an effect of depth which, combined with the richness of color and a highly decorative graphic style, serves to produce a beautiful almost psychedelic outcome. Evocative of Cinderella’s Castle at Disney, the famed structure incorporates elements from a variety of other architectural sources – London’s Big Ben, Southeast Asian stupas, Egyptian obelisks, the Universal Studios’ fountain, and the World Trade Center towers to name just a few. Conglomerating all of these disparate structures into one unified “peace tower,” Tomaselli equates the suffering and destruction of one with that of the entire group. In this intimately scaled but visually powerful canvas, Tomaselli has fused his quasi-psychedelic, Southern California roots with a pan-humanist vision of liberation and freedom of mind, body and spirit.



Study for Tower of Peace Towers

photo collage, acrylic, gouache, resin on wood
24 x 24 in. (61 x 61 cm.)
Signed, titled and dated "Fred Tomaselli 2007 'Study For Tower of Peace Towers'" on the reverse.

$100,000 - 150,000 

Sold for $100,000

Contact Specialist
Amanda Stoffel
Head of Day Sale
+1 212 940 1261

Contemporary Art Day Sale

New York 16 May 2014 11am