Artist Tony Tasset Survey Exhibit Makes Portland Debut

Tony Tassett: Works 1993 – 2003, a survey of works by the Chicago-based Artist.

January 30, 2003– Portland Institute for Contemporary Art (PICA), the vanguard of contemporary art and creativity in Portland, announces the exhibit, Tony Tasset: Works 1993 – 2003, a survey of works by the Chicago-based artist. This exhibition will be on view from March 12, 2003 – April 19, 2003 in PICA’s gallery space at 219 NW 12th Avenue. Open Wednesday through Saturday 12 pm – 6 pm.

The exhibit features thirteen of the artist’s sculptural, photographic, and video projects completed over the past ten years. Throughout his 16-year career, Tasset has consistently posed fundamental questions concerning the artist’s role in contemporary society. Shifting medium and style to accommodate particular ideas for artwork, the artist has increasingly turned his investigation inward; using his own image and elements of his family life–his wife, son, his garden, and the rituals of his day. These works explore issues of narcissism, mortality, and consumer culture.

Featured in the installation are photo-portraits of Tasset impersonating his idols Robert Smithson and Neil Young; recent videos showing the artist morphing into his family members; and sculptures including a taxidermied blue jay and a life sized recreation of his backyard cherry tree.

This exhibition has been developed in collaboration with Barry Blinderman at the University Galleries of Illinois State University in Normal, Illinois. A full color catalog documents the show, and includes an essay by Hamsa Walker of Chicago’s Renaissance Society and an interview between Tasset and co-curator Stuart Horodner.

About the Artist

Tony Tasset (b. 1960) moved to Chicago from Cincinnati in 1983, and began attending Northwestern University and The School of The Art Institute of Chicago. He received his MFA from SAIC in 1985. Recent exhibitions have included Tony Tasset: As it Is (2000) at The Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, The Body in Photographs: A Recent Gift from Eileen and Peter Norton (2000) at Bard College, and an exhibition at Feigen Contemporary in New York (2000).

About PICA’s Visual Exhibition Program

PICA’s Visual Exhibition Program is generously supported by The McGeady Foundation and in part by The Durst Fund for New Work, grants from The Regional Arts and Culture Council, The Oregon Arts Commission and The National Endowment for the Arts.

About PICA

PICA, the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, was founded in June of 1995 to serve as the missing link for art in Portland. The only organization of its kind in the Northwest, PICA bridges the gap between historically focused art institutions, commercial galleries, and mainstream performing arts, and fosters a multitude of mediums including: visual arts, dance, original music, experimental theater, performance art, artist residencies and education.

The organization’s mission is to advance emerging ideas in new art in Portland and in the international art community. PICA strives to reach this objective by identifying provocative, contemporary and cultivating performances, artists and their art, and bringing these works to Portland. In addition, PICA seeks diverse, experimental, influential and meaningful work that fosters growth and an open-minded environment. More information on PICA can be found at www.pica.org.
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