An archive on the artist Tony Greene (1955 - 1990).
Commentary by Richard Hawkins unless noted otherwise.
Tony Greene: Room of Advances
Curated by Judie Bamber and Monica Majoli. Thu, 19.06.2014–Sun, 07.09.2014. MAK Center Los Angeles, Schindler House
link to the Whitney Museum’s website
The lush surfaces of Tony Greene’s work, in which elaborate paintings are embalmed on tinted photographs, address desire and mortality, with a nod to the dark ornamentation of the Victorian age. The photographs on view in the Biennial depict two subjects: taxidermied wildlife, exhibited in natural history dioramas, and idealized male bodies depicted in physique magazines. Obscured by painted foliage and calligraphic swirls, these images can be seen alternatively as objects of sexual yearning or as memorials for those lost to AIDS.
From the Chicago Tribune, April 9 2014:
Tony Greene at Iceberg
Greene, a painter who died of AIDS-related complications in 1990, is presented in the Biennial under the auspices of his friends, artists Catherine Opie and Richard Hawkins. In Chicago, artist John Neff has organized a homey, poignant exhibition that places Greene’s homoerotic icons amid those produced by a younger generation of queer artists, as if he were still alive and well. Among them is a cryptically inscribed and folded textile by Elijah Burgher, one of the youngest artists in the Biennial. Built up from layers of paint and varnish applied atop photocopies of buff male bodies, Greene’s sexy, tactile pictures — traced with decorative butterflies and vines — are part camp, part missing history.