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  • Provenance

    Stephen Friedman Gallery, London

  • Exhibited

    Peekskill, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Figure It Out, March - April 2006; New York, Zwirner & Wirth, Contemporary Sculpture from a Private Collection, September 14 - October 14, 2006

  • Literature

    T. Friedman, O Two Oh Three, New York, 2003, p. 51. (illustrated); B. E. Wilson, “Brand X Art,” CHRONOGRAM, April 1, 2005; K. Bell, G. Lulay, and A. Whitney, eds., Contemporary Sculpture from a Private Collection, New York, 2006, n.p. (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    "What appears to be futile and ephemeral is transformed into a dense and succinct figuration, almost as if it were intended to demonstrate the infinite resources of everyday objects, as well as their chameleonic capacity. The process that Friedman identifies is not the Dadaist and Duchampesque transposition of an object that seeks salvation by transferring itself to the work of art; it is rather a procedure that descends into its folds so as to infuse them with an infinite existential variety…here it is the object that feels it is ‘inhibited’ by a multi-faceted and expressive identity."
    (C. Germano. “The Anatomy of Things,” Tom Friedman, Milan, 2002, pp. 15-16) 
    The present lot, Garbage Can, exemplifies the artist’s adroit handling of delicate materials, while infusing the subject with a hearty dose of humor. Friedman uses construction paper to portray a man's head, unseen, in a garbage can with only the feet and legs extending, donned with carefully rendered New Balance sneakers. Friedman’s noted talent for manipulating unusual, often delicate paper materials is by Garbage Can’s ability to defy gravity.

  • Artist Biography

    Tom Friedman

    American • 1965

    Tom Friedman is a multimedia artist working mainly in sculpture and works-on-paper. Interested in looking at the thin line between fantasy and autobiography, Friedman often creates works that push viewers into a complicit state of witnessing. His sculptures are composed of a multitude of objects, and he assembles them in such a way as to transform the mundane into an intricate work of art. He combines materials such as Styrofoam, foil, paper, clay, wire, hair and fuzz through a labor-intensive practice that seeks to tell a story, whether about himself or the world at large.

    Friedman's approach to autobiography is not memoiristic. Rather, he takes the smallest moments of his life, like a piece of paper found on the street, and blows it out of proportion.

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Garbage Can


Paper, glue, and plastic garbage can.

60 x 39 x 22 1/2 in. (152.4 x 99.1 x 57.2 cm).

$500,000 - 700,000 

Sold for $505,000

Contemporary Art Part I

15 May 2008, 7pm
New York