rodolphe janssen is pleased to announce Betty Tompkin's fourth solo project with the gallery from January 18th to March 17th 2018.
Betty Tompkins began painting large scale, photorealistic airbrush paintings of penetrations and masturbations in 1969.
Beside the feminist content of her work, her intention from the start was to have two distinct elements which would allow the abstract and the sexual content to coexists equally in the work. She achieved this by cropping the images in such a way that only the explicit sexual parts remain, without heads or other body parts.
After some group shows in the early 1970's, her work remained widely overlooked by the critics and art market due to its subject matter. In 1973, two of her works were held and confiscated by French customs for censorship reasons.
In 2003, Tompkins was invited by the New York curator Bob Nickas to take part in the 7t–h Biennale de Lyon which brought extraordinary attention to her work. After that, the Centre Georges Pompidou acquired Fuck Painting #1 (one of the two paintings that had been censored in 1973) for its permanent collection.
Since the late 1960's, Betty Tompkins has been painting her Fuck, Cunt or Kiss Paintings, studying different mediums going from airbrush to stamps, graphite powder or fingerprints. She imposes a distance with her explicit subjects, or as she says: 'I see something intimate made monumental–we see a visual we don't usually see in a medium we don't expect.'
About the artist
Betty Tompkins (born in 1945 in Washington D.C. USA) lives and works in New York, NY USA. Her works have been shown at Kunstraum Innsbruck, Innsbruck, Austria; The FLAG Art Foundation, New York, NY USA; The Hall Art Foundation | Schloss Derneburg Museum, Derneburg, Germany; Fortnight Institute, New York, NY USA; Künstlerhaus Bremen, Bremen, Germany; Dallas Contemporary, Dallas, TX USA; Houston Museum of Modern Art, Houston, TX USA; Stamford Museum & Nature Center, Stamford, CT USA; PS1, New York, NY USA; Juniata Museum of Art, Huntingdon, PA USA and The Biennale de Lyon 2003 Lyon, France.Her works are in some important collections such as The Brooklyn Museum, New York, NY USA; Allen Art Museum, Oberlin, OH USA; Centre Pompidou, Musee National d'Art Moderne, Paris, France; Islip Art Museum, East Islip, NY USA; Museum Of The City Of New York, NY USA; Stamford Museum, Stamford, CT USA and Zimmereli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJ USA.
Press release courtesy rodolphe janssen.