Simpson is an imaginist who has worked in nearly every medium, including woodworking, painting, printmaking, ceramics, bookmaking, jewelry, and writing. Whether it’s a painting or sculptural object, in each of Simpson’s works there is an identifiable style that puzzles together the artist’s personal and cultural references into a signature blend of joyfulness and subtle commentary. On describing Simpson’s sensibility, Karen S. Chambers comments, “It’s whimsical and wry, naive yet saavy, inteligent but not cerebral.” Edward S. Cooke, Jr. (Yale University) wrote, “Simpson is simply a maker who deftly blends utility, memory, irony, and spirituality in his accomplishments. Fundemental to his life has been a conviction that ‘art can be meaningful and still give joy.’ He makes faciful, whimsical objects that incorporate verbal and visual puns and probe the meanings of cultural icons, but undertakes such commentary wthin comfortable settings. His works possess an engaging tension that employs friendly humor or familiar details and conventions to inspire long-lasting thoughtfulness.”
The collection presented at Momentum spans the past 30 years, and focuses on Simpson’s sculptural furniture including cabinets, clocks, and benches, paintings, whimsical wood sculptures, pottery, and works on paper. Tommy Simpson’s work is included in numerous public collections including the Renwick Gallery and the American Art Museum at the Smithsonian Institute, DC; and the Museum of Art and Design, NY.