Home Artists Tom McGlynn

Tom McGlynn

United States

14 Works exhibited on Kooness

Current location

New York

Represented by

Works by Tom McGlynn

Test Pattern 5


60.9 x 45.7cm

2900,00 €

Small Test Pattern 4


50.8 x 40.6cm

2900,00 €

Small Test Pattern 2


50.8 x 40.6cm

2900,00 €

Small Grey Test Pattern 2


45.7 x 35.5cm

2300,00 €

Large Test Pattern 3


60.9 x 45.7cm

2900,00 €

Grey Test Pattern 1


60.9 x 45.7cm

2900,00 €

Large Test Pattern 7


45.7 x 60.9cm

2900,00 €

Tom McGlynn is an American abstract artist whose oeuvre explores interactive color and proportion in tension with their potential semiotic meaning. He is also an independent curator and a writer, contributing regularly to The Brooklyn Rail. Furthermore, the artist is the founding director of Beautiful Fields, an organization dedicated to socially-engaged curatorial projects. He is currently teaching at the Parsons New School of Design in New York City.

He lives and works in the NYC area.

Born in 1958, the artist became interested in drawing at an early age. His talent was encouraged within his family and he eventually enrolled Ramapo College in New Jersey, earning a BFA in printmaking in 1980. In 1996, the artist obtained his MFA in painting from Hunter College. As an undergraduate student in his twenties, he was influenced by both art and literature, especially by the works of the artist Robert Smithson and the poet William Carlos Williams who both lived a formative and meaningful part of their lives in NJ, where McGlynn grew up. 

The painter utilizes a language of forms he receives from his physical environment. Inspired by signs, logos, architectural patterns, and other contemporary visual patterns and shapes, he offers new, pared down interpretations of common imagery. His style is ostensibly formalist, or, more accurately, post-minimalist, but beyond these labels, he conceives of the work in terms of their immediacy and phenomenal (optical and tactile) presence. He rigorously hand-paints his works, slowly applying layers of acrylic to wood panel, canvas or paper. At first glance, the work may appear to be too precise to have been hand-painted, but a closer look reveals brush strokes and subtle tactile shifts left by the artist's hand. The structure of his current body of work is mostly determined by the rectangular format of the support. The artist prefers to keep things formally simple in order to derive an implicit complexity of meaning, thereby opening up the ontological experience of the artist to his viewer’s own.

The imperfect-although meticulously made-forms created by McGlynn's technique evoke something modern, controlled, familiar, and simultaneously in flux. He is currently working on a new body of paintings that develop and extend the artist's interest in the simple gestalt experience of enculturated experience and memory. Additionally, the artist has continued to assemble a vast array of quotidian photographs that serve as a notebook of his daily formal interactions with architecture, signage and local color.

The NYC-based artist is interested in phenomenology, the study of the structures of human consciousness as they are revealed through experiences. By abstracting common contemporary forms, reordering them in a way intended to evoke an emotional response, he is engaging in what he describes as "a form of contemporary realism."

The artist calls the sum total of the culture's visual landscape, including the media, architecture, advertising, and various elements of the urban backdrop, the "accumulated sediment of mediated consciousness." He works with this "sediment" as a raw material, abstracting it and capturing the resulting imagery, isolating it in time and space. The maximal potential ends of the totality of visual experience are made possible in the artist's work through minimal means.

He counts Kasimir Malevich, Ellsworth Kelly, Mary Heilmann, Barnett Newman, and Peter Halley among his artistic influences. McGlynn has also been influenced by a growing up in post-WWII America and its specific zeitgeist - described by Cady Noland as a specific, gestalt experience – as well as other contemporary artists such as Olivier Mosset, Rachel Whiteread, Sadie Benning, Jacob Kassay, Mona Hatoum, Doug Ashford, David Hammons and Liam Gillick, among others.

Solo Exhibitions

2017 Station/Decal/Survey, Rick Wester Fine Art, New York City

2016 Tom McGlynn, Quotidien, Drawing Rooms, Jersey City

2014 Tom McGlynn: Geochromatic Index, dadabasenyc.com

2012  Very Much Like (Pictures of Nothing), paintings and sculptures, Hamilton Square, Jersey City, 

          Tom McGlynn, Paintings and Sculpture, Hoffstetter Gallery, Pingry School, NJ

2009  Path Paintings and Drawings, Green Mountain College, Poultney, Vermont

2008  Color Fields and Paths, Castleton State College, Castleton, Vermont

2007  Wonder (video installation), Jersey City Museum, Jersey City, NJ

2004  Test Patterns: Paintings and Drawings, Raritan Valley Community College, NJ

2001  Mural Installation, Art Resources Transfer, NY, NY

1999   New Paintings, Art Resources Transfer, NY, NY




  • Plain Sight, catalogue essay for group show at Western Michigan University, for the NYPOP program of UMass Amherst


  •  Toward a Generic Aesthetics: A Non – Philosophy of Art, &&& Journal, The New Centre for Research and Practice May 29 2015
  •   Driving to Amherst, catalogue essay for Nathaniel Leib, artist in residence at Amherst College 2014 - 15


  • Following the Socia l, apexart catalogue with essay for “Memphis Social”, Memphis, TN


  • Arcadia Now, catalogue for curated group show, Castleton State College, VT


  • Lateral Thinking, Catalogue and Essay, Eileen Torpey exhibit, NY, NY


  • Deluxe, Catalogue with Essay, “Surface Considerations”, Jersey City, NJ


  •  Unnatural Selection, Catalogue with contributing essay , Raritan Valley, Community College, North Branch, NJ
  •  Urban Encounters, Catalogue Essay, “The Memory of a Meeting Place ”, The New Museum, NY, NY


  • Mac Wells, Light into Being, Retrospective at Hunter College, Contributing essay, NY, NY


  •  After the Fall: Aspects of Abstract Painting since 1970, Vol. II,
  •  Contributing essay, curated by Lilly Wei at the Newhouse Center f or Contemporary Art, NY


  • The Whitney Museum of American Art, NY, NY
  •  The Museum of Modern Art, NY, NY
  •  The Cooper - Hewitt National Design Museum of the Smithsonian Institution, NY, NY
  •  Fogg Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
  •  Getty Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  •  Smith College, Northampton, MA
  •  Staadt Museum, Berlin, Germany
  •  University of Kansas, Lawrence, KA
  •  University of Wisconsin, Kohler Art Library, Madison, WI
  •  Victoria and Albert Museum, London England
  •  Spencer College, Yale University, New Haven, C T