Tony Tasset (b. 1960 in Cincinnati, OH) has become renowned for creating work that satirizes our culture of exhibition and display. His work engages with the principle that the formation and understanding of our history is crucially affected by the manner in which our most esteemed objects are displayed and how our most cherished narratives are told—an approach that harkens McLuhan’s axiom “the medium is the message”. Works like Tasset’s “Hot Dog Man” (2011), “Bear” (2012), or “Rainbow” (2012) have come to epitomize Tasset’s work. Referencing the fiberglass advertisements common in America’s Midwest or on eastern seaboard boardwalks, these sculptures tap into a tradition of amusement and advertising culture considered unique to the States. In these pieces, dime-novelties and highway-side attractions are presented within the context of fine art, a synthesis which equates dichotomous ends of the traditional cultural evaluative spectrum.
Tony Tasset was selected as an artist for the 2014 Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. Tasset’s select recent exhibitions include Me And My Arrow at Kavi Gupta CHICAGO | Elizabeth St.; Civilization and Its Discontents: SAIC Alumni Exhibition, Chicago, IL; Spill Paintings at Kavi Gupta CHICAGO | Washington Blvd.; Look at Me: Portraiture from Manet to the Present at Leila Heller Gallery, New York, NY; Shall I tell you the secret of the whole world? Painting, Parody, and Disguise, curated by Michael Stillion, at the Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati, OH; The Way of the Shovel: Art as Archaeology at Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL; The 7 Borders, Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft, Louisville, KY; Domestic Abstractions: 1986 – 2013 at Kavi Gupta BERLIN; Rainbow at Sony Pictures Studios, Culver City; Life During Wartime at Rochester Art Center, Rochester; MCA DNA: Chicago Conceptual Abstraction, 1986-1995, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL; Tony Tasset at Kavi Gupta CHICAGO; Judy at Leo Koenig, New York, and This Will Have Been: Art, Love and Politics in the 1980’s, ICA Boston, MA and Walker Art Center, MN, curated by Helen Molesworth.
Tasset received his B.F.A. at the Art Academy of Cincinnati and his M.F.A. at The School of the Art Institute in Chicago. Tasset’s work has been the subject of many reviews and feature articles in publications such as ArtForum, Flash Art, and Art In America. Tasset’s work is included in notable private and public collections including the San Francisco Museum Of Modern Art, the Museum Of Contemporary Art in Chicago, and Museum für Moderne Kunste in Frankfurt. Tasset lives and works in Chicago.