Liliane Tomasko, 12 nights x dreams
Rockland Center for the Arts
11 February – 11 March 2018
Liliane Tomasko has exhibited widely in museums and galleries across the US and Europe, and is represented in important collections worldwide. This will be Tomasko’s first exhibition in Rockland County since moving her main working studio to Tappan NY in 2015, and will offer a rare glimpse into the philosophical reverie that underpins all of the artist’s work.
Tomasko finds inspiration in the mystery of the most mundane artifacts of domestic life: piled up bags, folded bedlinens, a dress on a hanger. One particular series of paintings, from 1999-2000, of empty beds with crumpled sheets, became central to the artist’s current direction.
In 2014-15 Tomasko made a series of photographs, recording the human imprints left on the bedsheets after a night’s sleep. Like a fingerprint of a night they are a record of a life in the tossing and turning, the involuntary motions of dream. This inspiration was then further honed down to a series of line drawings that use the wrinkles of a night’s sleep as the starting point for Tomasko’s painting from 2015 to date.
This exhibition of new work sees Tomasko honing that concept still further, using a collection of folded and stacked hotel bedlinens. Each measuring 109 x 65 inch, the scale of a twin bed, the sheets are now unfolded and drawn on with bravura strokes of spray paint, then hung with their irregular and individual grids of folds still visibly present. Semi-transparent black is contrasted with carbon black, white against the off-white fabric, and blue, create a near monochrome nightscape.
Twelve bedsheets represent twelve nights. A night is defined as 12 hours. Twelve is a symbol of cosmic order, the number of space and time: there are 12 months in a year; 12 signs in both the Chinese and Western Zodiac; 12 tribes of Israel; and in Greek mythology there were 12 Olympian gods. The artist sleeps with her husband and child in the same bed each night, where two became three, with the addition of one. And each person dreams untold dreams each night, so from 12 the possibilities are myriad.
These dreams are made manifest in a series of multicolored drawings in which Tomasko extrapolates the plethora of possibilities that lie within the same lines of the timeworn sheets. Like jewels from a dream, the colors reveal a mindscape of oranges, pinks, reds, greens, yellows, and blues. Dynamic and brave, yet quietly luminous and reticent at the same time, the drawn marks demand recognition and then seemingly self-efface.
Recent museum exhibitions include ‘Abstract Painting Now!’, Kunsthalle Krems, Austria (2017); PIFO Gallery, Beijing, China (2017); Fundacion Bancaja, Valencia, Spain (2016); Kunsthalle Rostock, Germany (2015); Lowe Art Museum, University of Miami, Miami, USA (2015); Phoenix Art Museum, AZ, USA (2015).
Liliane Tomasko is represented by: Marc Straus, New York; Bechter Kastowsky Galerie, Vienna, Austria; Kerlin Gallery, Dublin; Blain Southern, Berlin and London.
“12 nights x dreams” exhibit will be on view February 11 through March 11, 2018. An opening artist reception will be held Sunday, February 11th, 1 – 4 pm. The exhibit will be closed on Friday, Feb. 16 and opening at 1:00pm on Feb. 23. Free to the public. Regular hours are: Mon-Fri 10-4; Sat 1-4, and Sun 1-4 pm.