Tom of Finland

Patrick Staff @ Chisenhale Gallery, Feb 19 – Apr 12

17 February 2015

London’s Chisenhale Gallery is bringing a new film installation by Patrick Staff titled The Foundation, running February 19 to April 12.

Combining footage shot at LA’s Tom of Finland Foundation, where the archives of gay icon and erotic artist Touko Laaksonen or Tom of Finland are held, with choreographed sequences shot in a constructed set, Staff’s The Foundation explores the intergenerational nature of queer relationships.

In a sense, the film is an homage not to Tom of Finland but to the communities that support him, the “ideas of intergenerational relationships and care”. Weaving his own story in with that of Tom of Finland and the community that dutifully upholds his legacy, Staff combines film with dance and performance to explore the life of a “younger trans person within a context dominated by the overtly masculine, male identity of an older generation”, using his wry humour – “Every cocksucker is well aware that the same man who puts on a badge to arrest him  probably just gets his blowjobs at a different truck stop” – to poke at its social and political implications.

See the Chisenhale Gallery exhibition page for details. **


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‘From Style to Substance’ @ ICA Sep 7

3 September 2013

Appropriation of the margins into the mainstream is a because subject in critical discourse, especially in these days of reproducing and decontextualising imagery with the tap of track pad. Hence, over two parts and one full day on Saturday, September 7, the ICA will be exploring appropriation of queer subculture at From Style to Substance in conversation with a number of key identities in the uneasy, though dynamic, collusion between art, advertising and fashion.

Centered around fashion illustrator Antonio Lopez and fetish artist Tom of Finland and their roots in advertising and fashion, the event will explore their ideas, practices and enduring legacy in conversation with the likes of Durk Dehner of Tom of Finland Foundation and performance artist, writer Dominic Johnson among others.

See the ICA website for more details. **

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