These chemical cocktails [embedded in the paintings] can no longer reach the brain through the bloodstream and must take
a different route to altering perception. In my work, they travel to the brain through the eyes.
Fred Tomaselli (American, b. 1956) is inspired by the premodern concept that a painting is a window to another reality, a place to begin a journey to the transcendent sublime. The rhetoric of psychedelia and various strains of alternative culture offer the possibility of similar journeys, and the parallels between these two worlds have long intrigued him. As the utopian ideals of both modernism and 1960s counterculture have simultaneously dissolved into the complex reality we now inhabit, Tomaselli searches through our contemporary dystopia for the remnants of these ideas: escapism, altered consciousness, pleasure, beauty, desire, and seduction. His transformative paintings are created by placing pharmaceuticals, plants, paint, and images from a variety of sources between layers of finely polished resin.
Contains five each of the following notecards:
Untitled (Rug), 1995
Echo, Wow and Flutter, 2000
Millennium Phosphene Bloom, 2005