Tom Friedman doesn't have a signature style; he has a signature mind. In his new show at Luhring Augustine Gallery in New York, the 46-year-old artist presents works that range from in-your-face and splashy (an eight-foot-tall statue of himself, peeing) to amazingly subtle (a hand-drawn facisimile of a typewritten word list). The gallery that follows includes many of the pieces in his latest show, which will mark his return to the New York scene after a seven-year absence, as described in my Newsweek profile of Friedman.
This first image shows Friedman in his studio in Easthampton, Mass., at work on a piece called Untitled (sun). Using only wooden sticks stuck into a styrofoam ball, Friedman tries to evoke the star at the center of our lives. This is classic Friedman: using the most modest of materials to capture the most majestic of subjects.