Nicelle Beauchene is pleased to present Salt for Breakfast, an exhibition by Thomas Tomczak at the gallery’s project space Third Floor. This will be the artist’s first solo exhibition in New York.
In Salt for Breakfast, Tomczak’s watercolor and graphite portraits of women charge the apartment with a soft storm of affective unease. Many of the subjects are the artist’s friends, staged in loosely defined interior scenes. Each woman gazes directly at the viewer; their eyes linger, offering a familiar, yet confrontational intimacy.
Other works evoke the emotional lives of transgressive fictional characters from film and television. For Jane, Tomczak airily renders the eponymous woman from the 1984 film Paris, Texas; in this key scene, she is captured in a peep show booth, unknowingly regarded by her estranged husband on the other side of the glass. The artist also depicts Cherie Currie from The Runaways, whose disillusion with the everyday morphs into a carnal lust for oblivion, as well as moments from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, wherein the young title character tempers tumultuous psycho-sexual relationships. In these paintings, Tomczak images fictional moments of intense feeling to thrust an acerbic mirror upon reality.
Three larger than life portraits on panel anchor the exhibition: Alessandra (3), Biraaj, and Holly. At a distance, the women melt in the delicate hold of the watercolor. Upon closer inspection, the artist’s exacting pencil marks and washes of color give structure to the images. At their core, Tomczak’s portraits interrogate the power and presumptions that structure relationships.
Thomas Tomczak (b. 1987) was born and raised in New York City and received his MFA and BFA from New York University. Recent and upcoming group exhibitions include Team Gallery and the Queens Museum, respectively.
Third Floor is open by appointment only. For further information, please contact email@example.com