Since the end of the 1980s, Tom Burr has used appropriation strategies that not only apply to his sculptural and photographic production, but also prompt a large number of written works. Since the beginning of his career, he has created assemblages of personal writings and sources of varied natures and styles, which he has literally used as material – both conceptual and aesthetic – in his work. Burr extends his artistic practice into the field of writing, and vice versa; art and language complement each other.
Thirty-seven texts—works, poems, autobiographical texts and portraits—have been compiled for the first time in this publication. They were written over a long period of time (1991-2015), and their chronological presentation enables us to fully appreciate the conceptual and visual coherence and richness of Burr's writings.
Tom Burr (born in 1963, in New Haven, Connecticut) is an American artist whose work - photographs, drawings, sculptures, and installations - revisits the formal vocabulary of the avant-gardes of the 1960s, in particular Minimalism and post-Minimalism, and mixes together pop iconography, homosexual culture, underground aesthetics, musical, cinematographic, and literary influences, as well as contemporary architecture and design. These works articulate the problematics linked to architecture and public space, and questions of sociology, psychology, and gender politics. The conceptual investigation led by the artist essentially questions the way in which identity, especially sexual identity, is constructed or is, on the contrary, constrained by society and its physical spaces. The artist uses the appropriationist strategy of the 1980s, as it permits past works to be revisited in order to reveal different significations. Thus the artist reconfigures a history no longer fixed in time and space, but on the contrary perfectly open, and illuminating and transforming the present.