Home__MetroCard __ Drawings __ Cartoons___Writing___Bio __ Contact __News _ Ongoing
______________________________________________________________________

 

Biography:
Thomas McKean has exhibited his drawings, constructions, and collages in such New York spaces as LMAK Projects; HQ Gallery; ZieharSmith; Denise Bibro Gallery; The Small Works Show; "Single Fare" at 224 Grand; and the Invisible Dog Art Center. His current work consists of collages and constructions made out of one material: the New York City MetroCard (the card used to board buses and subways) and have been featured in The Huffington Post and The Gothamist. His illustrations have appeared in The Nation and Food and Wine among other magazines. Also an author, his latest book, A Conversation with Ruth Pitter, was published in 2010 by the HappenStance Press, Scotland.

Thomas McKean lives and works in New York City.

Statement:
MetroCards. Usually we swipe them in a hurry as we pass through the turnstile, hoping we haven't missed the subway. Or dip them as we enter a bus, hoping there's still enough money on them to pay for the ride. But we barely notice them; they're as omnipresent and invisible as pigeons. I stopped to look at them one day and haven't looked back yet. In their limited palette, I've found an expanding world of images, colours, ideas. Mosaics, collages, portraits, abstracts, constructions, dioramas, combination drawing and collages, all these keep pouring forth from this little object, not much bigger than two by three inches. Some of the pieces are the exact size of a MetroCard; others cover large sheets of papers; still others are structures two inches thick, made of literally a thousand MetroCards. Finding the cards to use is part of the experience. And perhaps because I'm from New York, and this is my world, without setting out to, I'm creating a world from one of its iconic symbols.

Recent Shows, Publications, and Appearances:
2012

Guest Lecturer; West Chester University, West Chester, Pennsylvania
Solo Show; British International School, New York, New York
Feature article in SpeakUp; Milan, Italy
2011
“(Inside) Joke”; Augusta Savage Gallery, UMass, Amherst, Massachusetts
“Kentucky Derby”; Smack/Mellon, Brooklyn, New York
“Single Fare II”; Sloane Fine Art, New York, New York
“The Revolution…”; Kuntshalle Galapagos, Brooklyn, New York
Feature articles in The Huffington Post and The Gothamist
2010
“The Surrealist Next Door”; Wm Turner Gallery, Atlanta, Georgia
“If You See Nothing, Say Something”; Invisible Dog Art Centre; Brooklyn, New York
“Single Fare”; 224 Grand, Brooklyn, New York
“Postcards from the Edge”; Ziehar/Smith, New York, New York
“A Conversation with Ruth Pitter” (book); HappenStance Press, Glenrothes,
Scotland
2009
“Ten Artists, One Book” (book and show); LMAK Projects, Brooklyn, New York
“Small Works Show”; NYU, New York, New York
“Welcome to Jersey” (limited edition commissioned print); Brodsky Center for the
Arts, New Jersey
“Hooray for Grandma Jo!” (picture book); Weekly Reader selection; 75,000 copies
ordered
2008
“Eggcartonopolis”; HQ Gallery, Brooklyn, New York
“For the Children”; Denise Bibro Gallery, New York, New York
“Politics and Art”; 324 Gallery, Brooklyn, New York
“O homen guardava todo”/”The Man Saved Everything” (story); O Arquivo/The
Archive; Vera Cortês Agência de Arte, Lisbon, Portugal