For over 20 years, Tom Huck (a.k.a. Tom Hück) has been “hitting people over the head” with X-rated sociopolitical commentary that combines brash content, technical virtuosity and layered references to the history of prints.1 His elaborate compositions roil with bawdy images of sex, gluttony and violence, delivered in intricately carved woodcuts of monumental scale that reference his art historical heroes: printmakers from Master ES to Max Beckmann. His “fan-boy worship” of Albrecht Dürer began at age 14 when he saw the full woodcut cycle of Dürer’s Apocalypse (1498) at the Uffizi gallery with his grandparents. Huck’s images begin with numerous sketches and art-historical research that coalesce into a cartoon that he cuts using traditional Japanese wood gouges. His matrices can take up to a year and half to complete.
Huck has shown with galleries in New York, San Francisco and Kansas City and his work is held in many public collections. This past fall marked his debut with Old Master dealer C.G. Boerner, where his work is complemented by the artists he reveres. “Booger Stew: The Monumental Triptychs of Tom Huck (I–III)” included three out of a planned cycle of 14 oversized triptychs. Electric Baloneyland, at approximately seven by nine feet, is the largest and most recent (also on view were The Tommy Peepers (2014) and The Transformation of Brandy Baghead Pts. 1, 2, & 3 (2009), somewhat smaller in scale.)
- Telephone interview with the artist, 10 November 2017.