List Projects: Kenneth Tam

In a wood paneled space, five men looking toward the right, all wearing pants, tin foil vests, and belts with bells dangling

Installation view, List Projects: Kenneth Tam, MIT List Visual Arts Center, 2019

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Kenneth Tam
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For his first solo institutional exhibition, Kenneth Tam will present his recent video installation Breakfast in Bed (2016).

Tam’s practice takes on interpersonal power dynamics and physical intimacy, particularly between men, as a point of departure in investigating broader themes around private and social boundaries. Often recruiting participants online via websites like Craigslist and Reddit, the artist instigates situations that call into question traditional patterns of heteronormativity, and function somewhere between social experiment, performance art, and absurdist theater.

Kenneth Tam’s (b. 1982, New York, lives and works in Houston) works encompass sculpture, video, and photography. Tam received an MFA from the University of Southern California and a BFA from Cooper Union. His work has been featured in exhibitions at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2016); Galerie Xippas, Paris (2015); Weingart Gallery, Occidental College, Los Angeles (2014); Night Gallery, Los Angeles (2013); and Pauline, Los Angeles (2012). His films have screened at Favorite Goods, Los Angeles (2014); loisiada, New York (2011); and The Box, Los Angeles (2010). He has been awarded a California Community Foundation Fellowship for Visual Artists (2015); the Core Program Fellowship at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (2015); and an Art Matters Foundation Grant (2013).

Exhibitions at the List Center are made possible with the support of Jane & Neil Pappalardo, Cynthia & John Reed, and Terry & Rick Stone.  In-kind media sponsorship provided by 90.9 WBUR Boston’s NPR News Station.

List Projects: Kenneth Tam is curated by Henriette Huldisch, Curator, MIT List Visual Arts Center.


General operating support is provided by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Council for the Arts at MIT, the Office of the Associate Provost at MIT, the MIT School of Architecture + Planning, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, and many generous individual donors. The Advisory Committee Members of the List Visual Arts Center are gratefully acknowledged.