Thomas Solomon (art dealer)

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Thomas Solomon is an American art dealer and curator who owns the Thomas Solomon Gallery in Los Angeles. Considered a "leading figure" in the Los Angeles art world, [1] he represents 1960s and 1970s conceptual and emerging artists. He also provides art consulting services through Thomas Solomon Fine Art Advising. He is the son of New York City art collectors and patrons Horace and Holly Solomon.

Art dealer person that buys and sells works of art

An art dealer is a person or company that buys and sells works of art. Art dealers' professional associations serve to set high standards for accreditation or membership and to support art exhibitions and shows.

Curator content specialist charged with an institutions collections and involved with the interpretation of heritage material

A curator is a manager or overseer. Traditionally, a curator or keeper of a cultural heritage institution is a content specialist charged with an institution's collections and involved with the interpretation of heritage material.

Los Angeles City in California

Los Angeles, officially the City of Los Angeles and often known by its initials L.A., is the most populous city in California; the second most populous city in the United States, after New York City; and the third-most populous city in North America, after Mexico City and New York City. With an estimated population of nearly four million people, Los Angeles is the cultural, financial, and commercial center of Southern California. The city is known for its Mediterranean climate, ethnic diversity, Hollywood, the entertainment industry, and its sprawling metropolis.


Life and career

Born in New York City in 1960, Solomon's parents, Horace and Holly Solomon, were collectors of contemporary art, who supported the Pop Art and Conceptual Art movements. [2] [3] Solomon’s early world was full of art and artists including Andy Warhol, Claes Oldenburg, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Indiana, Gordon Matta-Clark, Alexis Smith, William Wegman (photographer), and others. [4] [5] [6] The artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude were named his godparents. [7] [8]

Andy Warhol American artist

Andy Warhol was an American artist, director, and producer who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art. His works explore the relationship between artistic expression, advertising, and celebrity culture that flourished by the 1960s, and span a variety of media, including painting, silkscreening, photography, film, and sculpture. Some of his best known works include the silkscreen paintings Campbell's Soup Cans (1962) and Marilyn Diptych (1962), the experimental film Chelsea Girls (1966), and the multimedia events known as the Exploding Plastic Inevitable (1966–67).

Claes Oldenburg American artist

Claes Oldenburg is an American sculptor, best known for his public art installations typically featuring large replicas of everyday objects. Another theme in his work is soft sculpture versions of everyday objects. Many of his works were made in collaboration with his wife, Coosje van Bruggen, who died in 2009; they had been married for 32 years. Oldenburg lives and works in New York.

Roy Lichtenstein 20th-century American pop artist

Roy Fox Lichtenstein was an American pop artist. During the 1960s, along with Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, and James Rosenquist among others, he became a leading figure in the new art movement. His work defined the premise of pop art through parody. Inspired by the comic strip, Lichtenstein produced precise compositions that documented while they parodied, often in a tongue-in-cheek manner. His work was influenced by popular advertising and the comic book style. He described pop art as "not 'American' painting but actually industrial painting". His paintings were exhibited at the Leo Castelli Gallery in New York City.

Solomon received a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College, then directed White Columns, the New York alternative art space. [9] [10] In 1985, he curated his first show in Europe, an exhibition of 40 New York artists titled A Brave New World, A New Generation, at the Charlottenborg Exhibition Hall in Copenhagen. [11] After that, he migrated to the West Coast where he next curated shows for the Piezo Electric Gallery in Venice. [12]

Sarah Lawrence College private liberal arts college in the United States

Sarah Lawrence College is a private liberal arts college in Yonkers, New York. The college models its approach to education after the Oxford/Cambridge system of one-on-one student-faculty tutorials, which are a key component in all areas of study. Sarah Lawrence emphasizes scholarship, particularly in the humanities, performing arts, and writing, and places high value on independent study.

White Columns non-profit gallery for emerging artists

White Columns is New York City’s oldest alternative non-profit space. White Columns is known as a showcase for up-and-coming artists, and is primarily devoted to emerging artists who are not affiliated with galleries. All work submitted is looked at by the director. Some of the artists receive studio visits and some of those artists are exhibited. White Columns maintained a slide registry of emerging artists, which is now an online curated artist registry.

Copenhagen Capital of Denmark

Copenhagen is the capital and most populous city of Denmark. As of July 2018, the city has a population of 777,218. It forms the core of the wider urban area of Copenhagen and the Copenhagen metropolitan area. Copenhagen is situated on the eastern coast of the island of Zealand; another small portion of the city is located on Amager, and it is separated from Malmö, Sweden, by the strait of Øresund. The Øresund Bridge connects the two cities by rail and road.

In 2002, he curated an exhibition at the newly established Pasadena Museum of California Art, the inaugural show titled Beyond Boundaries: Bay Area Conceptual Art of the Nineteen-Seventies. [13]

The Pasadena Museum of California Art (PMCA) was an art museum located in Pasadena, California, United States, showcasing art and design that originates from California. The museum was founded by long-time Pasadena residents and art collectors Robert and Arlene Oltman. Ground was broken in 2000 and the museum officially opened in June 2002.

Thomas Solomon's Garage

In 1988, Solomon started his own gallery in a two-car West Hollywood garage down an alley, called The Garage. [14] [15] [16] [17] He later moved to a larger industrial space on Fairfax Avenue in 1991, also in West Hollywood. [18] During this time, he established a program that showcased emerging artists from Los Angeles, paired with well-known and internationally respected artists. This program led to the first solo exhibition of Jorge Pardo, which art critic Christopher Knight dubbed "among the more impressive debuts of recent memory." [19] [20] He also organized a solo show of work by Tim Burton (his first ever solo exhibition in a gallery) [21] and brought early attention to Damien Hirst. [22]

Tim Burton American filmmaker

Timothy Walter Burton is an American filmmaker, artist, writer, and animator. He is known for his dark, gothic, and eccentric horror and fantasy films such as Beetlejuice (1988), Edward Scissorhands (1990), The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), Ed Wood (1994), Sleepy Hollow (1999), Corpse Bride (2005), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007), Dark Shadows (2012), and Frankenweenie (2012). He is also known for blockbuster films, such as the adventure-comedy Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985), the superhero films Batman (1989) and its first sequel, Batman Returns (1992), the sci-fi film Planet of the Apes (2001), the fantasy-drama Big Fish (2003), the musical adventure film Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005), the fantasy film Alice in Wonderland (2010), and the film adaptation of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (2016).

Damien Hirst English artist

Damien Steven Hirst is an English artist, entrepreneur, and art collector. He is one of the Young British Artists (YBAs), who dominated the art scene in the UK during the 1990s. He is reportedly the United Kingdom's richest living artist, with his wealth valued at £215m in the 2010 Sunday Times Rich List. During the 1990s his career was closely linked with the collector Charles Saatchi, but increasing frictions came to a head in 2003 and the relationship ended.

Since 2004, Los Angeles’ Chinatown has been Solomon’s base of operations, starting with spaces at Rental Gallery, then at Cottage Home in a converted movie theater. [23] His latest gallery, which opened in 2009, is located on Chinatown’s Bernard Street. [24]

Thomas Solomon Gallery focuses on contemporary art by established as well as emerging artists with a roster of artists that includes Robert Barry, Juan Capistran, Bart Exposito, Peter Harkawik, Robert Levine, Josh Mannis, Dennis Oppenheim, Ry Rocklen, Miljohn Ruperto, Analia Saban, Mitchell Syrop, and Rosha Yaghmai. [25] Additional exhibitions featured the work of Gordon Matta-Clark [26] and Nam June Paik. [27] [28]

Thomas Solomon Fine Art Advising

Thomas Solomon Fine Art Advising is a Los Angeles-based art consulting practice run by Thomas Solomon. In an advisory capacity, Solomon has worked with software publisher and philanthropist Peter Norton (publisher of Norton Utilities) on a number of projects. Solomon helped organize The Peter and Eileen Norton Museum Donations Program that bestowed over 1,000 artworks to dozens of museums around the world, notable for being one of the largest gifts of contemporary art by a private donor. [29] [30] Solomon also consulted for Peter Norton on a $26.8 million Christie’s auction in 2011 and 2012. [31] [32] As a consultant, he also curated LA25, which featured the work of 25 emerging Los Angeles artists, for the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. [33] [34] The project culminated in a catalog and 2008 exhibition at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE) in Hollywood. [35] [36]

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  1. Michael Cohen (March/April 1995), Cityscape: Los Angeles: Interviews with Art World Professionals Flash Art International.
  2. Roberta Smith (January 16, 2014), A Dealer’s Eye, and Life: ‘Hooray for Hollywood!’ Recalls Holly Solomon’s Eye for Art New York Times .
  3. Brooks Adams (August 1989), Alley Cat Interview Magazine .
  4. Grace Glueck (June 10, 2002), Holly Solomon, Adventurous Art Dealer, Is Dead at 68 New York Times .
  5. G. Luther Whitington (June 1990), Art + Auction .
  6. David Colker (November 19, 1989), Gallery in a Garage: Second-Generation Art Entrepreneur Thomas Solomon Shuns Tradition and Displays Artwork in a Space that Opens on an Alley Los Angeles Times .
  7. G. Luther Whitington (June 1990), Art + Auction .
  8. Brooks Adams (August 1989), Alley Cat Interview Magazine .
  9. Grace Glueck (January 23, 1990), For Galleries, It's Westward Ho to Santa Monica New York Times .
  10. David Colker (November 19, 1989), Gallery in a Garage: Second-Generation Art Entrepreneur Thomas Solomon Shuns Tradition and Displays Artwork in a Space that Opens on an Alley Los Angeles Times .
  11. David Colker (November 19, 1989), Gallery in a Garage: Second-Generation Art Entrepreneur Thomas Solomon Shuns Tradition and Displays Artwork in a Space that Opens on an Alley Los Angeles Times .
  12. G. Luther Whitington (June 1990), Art + Auction .
  13. Christopher Knight (June 1, 2002), Ambitious Goals, Modest Results for Museum of California Art Los Angeles Times .
  14. Steven Holt & Michael McDonough (June1989), Now, Our Inalienable Right to Tinker Metropolitan Home.
  15. David Colker (November 19, 1989), Gallery in a Garage: Second-Generation Art Entrepreneur Thomas Solomon Shuns Tradition and Displays Artwork in a Space that Opens on an Alley Los Angeles Times .
  16. Roberta Smith (December 29, 1992), The Los Angeles Art World’s New Image New York Times .
  17. G. Luther Whitington (June 1990), Art + Auction .
  18. Nancy Kapitanoff (July 28, 1991), Gallery Moves Up and Out, but Still Calls Garage Home Los Angeles Times .
  19. Christopher Knight (April 27, 1990), Art Reviews: Impressive Debut Los Angeles Times .
  20. Suzanne Muchnic (April 1, 2001), Ascent of the Early Risers Los Angeles Times .
  21. Jan Tumlir (December 1, 1994), Playing Dead: Thomas Solomon's Garage, Los Angeles Artweek
  22. Damien Hirst Biography Walker Art Center .
  23. (2009), LACE Benefit Art Auction: Thomas Solomon Biography Archived 2014-07-02 at LACE.
  24. Suzanne Muchnic (July 26, 2009), L.A.'s Galleries Reframe the Recession Los Angeles Times.
  25. Artist Roster Archived 2014-04-18 at the Wayback Machine Thomas Solomon Gallery.
  26. Hunter Drohojowska-Philp (October 17, 2013), Art Talk: LA in London KCRW.
  27. 2013 Exhibitions Archived 2014-04-30 at the Wayback Machine Thomas Solomon Gallery.
  28. (2014), SFAQ Pick: Nam June Paik Solo Exhibition at Thomas Solomon Gallery, Los Angeles Archived 2014-05-06 at SFAQ International Arts & Culture.
  29. Michael Kimmelman (January 18, 2000), Handing Out Modern Art By the Bushel; A Couple Gives 1,000 Works To 29 Museums, Big and Small New York Times.
  30. Diane Haithman (July 8, 1998), Framing an Art World Merger Los Angeles Times.
  31. Jori Finkel (November 11, 2011), Culture Monster: Peter Norton Cashes In Los Angeles Times.
  32. (September 9, 2011), Works From the Peter Norton Collection: Ahead of the Curve Christies.
  33. About LA25 Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.
  34. Curatorial Project with Skadden & Arps, Sep 1, 2006-Nov 16, 2008 Archived July 6, 2014, at Thomas Solomon Gallery.
  35. (October 2008), LA25 Half-Life LACE.
  36. (October 8, 2008), LA25 Half-Life Archived 2014-07-02 at Flavorpill LA.