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Tabboo!

Tabboo! (Stephen Tashjian, b. 1959, Leicester, MA) is a multidisciplinary performer, designer, and artist with a fascination for celebrity, cityscapes, and the aesthetics of the everyday. Coming to prominence at the heart of New York City’s drag scene in the 1980s, Tabboo!’s work holds a diaristic impulse that has ranged from the visuals of nightlife to idyllic views of the everyday. Portraits of friends, still lifes, and work related to current political opposition populates the artist’s oeuvre, rendered sparkling and bittersweet with a striking honesty. Tabboo! has performed extensively, created murals for public projects, designed flyers, album covers, and collaborated with fashion designers. 

 

His work is held in permanent collections at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. 

 

Tabboo! will mount a dual exhibition at Karma and Gordon Robichaux in 2022.

Photobooth, 1983

Photobooth, 1983

Born 1959, Worcester, Massachusetts

Lives and works in New York

EDUCATION

1981

BFA, Massachusetts College of Art

2001

Exchange student at The Edinburgh College of Art, United Kingdom

Selected Solo and Two-Person Exhibitions

2022

Karma and Gordon Robichaux, New York (forthcoming)

2020

Karma and Gordon Robichaux, New York, Tabboo! 1983-1988

2019

Gordon Robichaux, New York, Garden, Elisabeth Kley & Tabboo!

2017

Gordon Robichaux, New York, World of Tabboo! Early and Recent Work

2016

Howl! Happening, New York, TABBOO! New Paintings

2008

Participant Inc., New York, The Nightingale

2006

Paul Kasmin Gallery, New York

1999

Rupert Goldsworthy Gallery, New York

1998

Wooster Gardens, New York, Tabboo! Paintings

1995

Tricia Collins Grand Salon, New York, Tabboo!

Rupert Goldsworthy Gallery, Berlin, Berlin Welcomes Tabboo!

Allez les Filles, Columbus, Ohio, A Kiss of Spring in the Dead of Winter

1994

Tom Cugliani Gallery, New York, Tabboo!

Papi Luis Cafe, New York, Small Spring Paintings on Paper

1991

Big Drop, New York, Paintings by Tabboo!

1987

Valorie Furlano Gallery, Providence, Rhode Island

1986

Limbo Gallery, New York, The Glitter Paintings

1982

ABC No Rio, New York

Lucky Strike Gallery, New York

1981

11th Hour Gallery, Boston

Selected Group Exhibitions

2021

Anton Kern Gallery, New York, 11

Massimo de Carlo, VSpace, Some Art That Got Me Through 2020, curated by Rob Pruitt

2020

Karma, New York, (Nothing but) Flowers

Jewish Museum, New York, We Fight to Build a Free World: An Exhibition by Jonathan Horowitz

Artist Curated Projects, Los Angeles, By Appointment

Provincetown Arts Society, Massachusetts, Intimate Companions, organized by Joe Sheftel

Parker Gallery, Los Angeles, A Page From My Intimate Journal, Part II–

Tom of Finland Foundation, Los Angeles, Heaven and Hell, organized by Seth Bogart and Jess Scott

2019

Grey Art Gallery, New York University; Patricia and Phillip Frost Art Museum, Miami, Florida;

Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, Ohio, Art after Stonewall, 1969-1989

The Savannah College of Art and Design, Savannah, Georgia, The Artist as Muse; Self-Portraiture in Contemporary Art

Western Exhibitions, Chicago, Pure ‘Joy’, organized by INVISIBLE EXPORTS

Herald St., London, Condo London

Johannes Vogt, New York, Summer of ’82, organized by Dan Cameron

2018

Participant Inc., New York, Breaking Wave

Alberta Merola Gallery, Provincetown, Massachusetts, HEADTOHEAD

2017

Museum of Modern Art, New York, Club 57: Film, Performance, and Art in the East Village, 1978-1983

White Columns, New York, White Columns Benefit Auction

Gavlak Gallery, Los Angeles, Flaming June VII (Flaming Creatures)

Collette, Paris, Candy Magazine at Colette, organized by Luis Venegas

2015

Shoot the Lobster, New York, Charmed

University Galleries, University of Nevada, Reno, Tomorrow’s Man, organized by Jack Pierson

Launch F18, New York, Inside the Episodee, organized by Jack Pierson

Howl! Happening, New York, Secrets of the Great Pyramid

2014

Matthew Marks Gallery, New York, A Drawing Show

2010

Vox Populi Gallery, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Dead Flowers

Albert Merola Gallery, Provincetown, Massachusetts, Night

2009

Centro Galego de Arte Contemporanea, Santiago de Compostela, Spain, Familiar Feelings. On the Boston Group

Andrew Edlin Gallery, New York, Out of Order, organized by Scott Hug

2007

JGM Galerie, Paris, French Kiss, organized by Rob Wynne

2006

Paul Kasmin Gallery, New York, the Name of This Show Is Not: Gay Art Now, organized by Jack Pierson

2004

The Migros Museum für Gegenwartskuns, Zurich, The Future Has a Silver Lining. Genealogies of Glamour

New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, East Village USA

2003

Gavin Brown’s enterprise, New York, Surreal Estate, organized by Jonathan Horowitz and Rob Pruitt

1996

Allez les Filles, Columbus, Ohio, Summer 1996

1995

Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), Boston, The Boston School, organized by Lia Gangitano

UFO Gallery, Provincetown, Massachusetts, Flowers

1994

Four Walls, Brooklyn, That Obscure Object of Desire, organized by Dan Cameron and Marilla Palmer

Leslie Lohman, New York, Diamonds, Gold, Myrhh

P.S.122 Gallery, New York, Fierce N.Y.

White Columns, New York, White Columns Benefit Auction

Marshall Arts Studios, Memphis, Tennessee, Fierce N.Y.

L’école des Beaux-Arts, Lorient, Brittany, France, Le Temps D’un Dessin

24 Hours for Life Gallery, Pride in Our Diversity, organized by Ronny Cohen, New York

450 Broadway Gallery, New York, Open Book, organized by Larry Krone

1993

Tom Cugliani Gallery, New York, Saint in the City, organized by Jack Pierson

Tom Cugliani Gallery, New York, Daniel Ibanez, Dan McCarthy, Stephen Tashjian

Leslie Lohman Gallery, New York

Barbara Braathen Gallery, New York, Urban Analysis, organized by Maynard Monrow

Tom Cugliani Gallery, New York, Summer Drawing Show

1992

Tom Cugliani Gallery, New York, Some People, organized by Jack Pierson

1991

The New Museum, New York, with Gran Fury and Annie Sprinkle
St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY, From Desire…A Queer Diary, organized by Nan Goldin
PS122 Gallery, New York

1989

Artists Space, New York, Witness: Against our Vanishing, organized by Nan Goldin
The New Leonard Beach Hotel, Miami, Interpretations

1988

598 Broadway Gallery, New York, Pure Joy, organized by Hebe Joy

1987

ASYLUM, New York, A Slice of Life

1986

Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana, Painting and Sculpture Today
Limbo gallery, New York, Art as Theater… …Theater as Art, Act I

1985

Pat Hearn Gallery, New York
Limbo Gallery, New York, Theatre as Art

1984

ABC No Rio, New York, the edge

1983

Piezo Electric, New York, 29 Artists from The Lower East Side

1981

Artists Space, New York, Witness: Against our Vanishing, organized by Nan Goldin

PUBLIC COLLECTIONS

Museum of Modern Art, New York
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
Museum of Fine Art Houston, Texas

PUBLICATIONS

2021

Tabboo! 1982-88
Text by Jarrett Earnest
Gordon Robichaux/Karma Books, New York
140 pages, hardcover
11 1⁄4 × 10 1⁄2 inches

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