AT THE TOM OF FINLAND FOUNDATION
Tom of Finland Foundation — a 501(c)(3), nonprofit, tax-exempt
organization — was co-founded in 1984 by Touko Laaksonen,
aka erotic artist Tom of Finland (1920-1991), and Durk Dehner.
From the moment his work began to receive wide circulation in
the '50s, Tomís drawings of ultra-masculine men, often interacting
with each other in an explicitly sexual way, were instrumental
in changing the way gay men viewed themselves. The original purpose
of the Foundation was to preserve Tomís portfolio of work so that
future generations would be able to enjoy and be influenced by
to information about Tom of Finland.
This purpose was expanded in 1988, when Tom and Durk realized
they had a responsibility to protect the legacy of all erotic
artists. The AIDS crisis, then at its height, was leading to the
loss or destruction of much erotic art by uncaring or vengeful
heirs, and no other facility in the world was willing to accept
the challenge of accepting and preserving the work.
The Foundation continues to be the only organization of its kind
in the world. In addition to its continuing preservation work,
it has expanded its mission further through programs to nurture
erotic artists around the world, and to increase awareness of
the contribution erotic art makes to our culture. Our activities
THE PERMANENT COLLECTION AND ARCHIVES.
The Foundationís Permanent Collection of thousands of original
works by Tom [305 finished drawings and
468 studies] and hundreds of other artists, and the Archives,
with well over half a million images, documents and pieces of
memorabilia, together comprise the worldís largest repository
of erotic art. The Archive Department has met every other Sunday
since 1983, with a core of volunteers working several hours on
the all-important recording and cataloguing of erotic art from
around the world. Erotic artists of all genders and orientations
are invited to submit samples of their work.
The Archives are quartered at Foundation Headquarters, a craftsman
period Colonial Revival house in Los Angeles, where Tom lived
and worked the last ten years of his life. Tomís studio has been
preserved as he used it, and the house also serves as a gallery
for a revolving display of works from the Permanent Collection.
The Archives, as well as tours of the house, are available by
appointment to collectors, educators, researchers, curators, students,
and the public.
EROTIC ART WEEKENDS.
The Foundationís largest events are the West Hollywood -- Los
Angeles Erotic Art Fair Weekend, held every year since 1995, and
the annual New York Erotic Art Fair Weekend, which began in 2001.
Scores of erotic artists from around the world participate in
these Fairs, which provide a unique opportunity not only to view
and purchase a wide variety of erotic art, but also to meet and
socialize with artists and other art-lovers.
to information about our upcoming West Hollywood -- Los Angeles
to information about our New York Fair held earlier this year.
NEWS AND UPDATES.
The biweekly email bulletin, the e-news and twice-yearly newsletter,
the Dispatch and constantly updated website at www.TomOfFinlandFoundation.org,
provide news about Foundation events, art and exhibitions, original
work for sale, and links to artistsí websites, to Foundation members
and art lovers around the world. The Foundationís website has
been honored with a number of awards for ďBest WebsiteĒ for an
to sign up for out Dispatch e-news.
to on-line versions of our printed Dispatch.
to our erotic art galleries.
to our artist, museum and gallery links.
BIENNIAL EMERGING EROTIC ARTIST CONTEST.
We have sponsored a contest for emerging artists every other
year since 1995. The competition has attracted entries from Asia,
Russia, Europe, South and Central America, Canada as well as throughout
the United States. The artists have their work judged by an international
panel, and the winners receive cash prizes and international publicity.
For many, this Contest has provided the kick-start they needed
to establish themselves as working artists.
to our Emerging Erotic Artist Contest.
The Foundation conducts a monthly Drawing Workshop, where live
models pose for upcoming and established artists. Salon Nights
provide informal venues for artists and collectors to meet and
exchange information about recent trends in the art world. And
symposiums are held annually, in conjunction with the Erotic Art
Fair Weekends in Los Angeles and New York, during which various
subjects are addressed by panels of experts interacting with the
to our current Drawing Workshop
MARCELLO LUPETTI ARTISTS FUND.
The Tom of Finland Foundation¹s Marcello Lupetti Artists
Fund assists artists with materials, registration fees for classes
and exhibitions, and can aid with the documentation of their artwork.
Part of the donations received at the Foundation¹s fundraisers
are now allocated to the Foundation¹s Artists Fund. Artists
are encouraged to donate a piece of their work for sale with the
proceeds going to help other artists and anyone may make contributions.
to our news about the Marcello Lupetti Artist Fund.
The Foundation has curated and presented retrospectives of Tom
of Finland and other erotic artists at museums in Finland, France,
Germany, Canada, Australia, and the United States. Works
by Tom of Finland are presently part of the permanent collections
at The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum
of Contemporary Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, The Portland
Museum of Art, and the Kiasma, The Finnish National Museum of
Contemporary Art. The Judith Rothschild Foundation acquired five
works by Tom of Finland for inclusion in a collection of significant
drawings of the 20th Century, which is to be gifted to the Museum
of Modern Art in New York.
to our announcements page.
FUNDRAISERS AND PARTIES.
Events are held to raise funds, acknowledge donors, and network
with the community of artists and collectors. "Tom's Bar"
in Los Angeles is the annual commemoration of Tom¹s birthday,
and is always a spirited celebration, featuring artists and performers,
and providing an occasion to embody Tom's ideal of uninhibited
camaraderie. Tom's Cocktail Party and the Commanders Dinner pay
special tribute to each year's major donors, while fund-raisers
in Palm Springs, New York, and other cities draw a wide spectrum
of men and women, and introduce them to the Foundation's work.
to our events page.
to our calendar page.
HOW YOU CAN HELP THE CAUSE OF EROTIC ART
BECOME A MEMBER!
The Foundation is a membership organization, and provides erotic
art lovers an opportunity to support the only cultural organization
in the world which focuses on the erotic arts. Contributions are
tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law, and provide funds
which allow the Foundation to offer its programs and services
to both artists and the community at large.
Membership is available on a number of levels: ARTIST ($25 per
year); RECRUIT ($50 per year); SEAMAN ($100 per year); COMMANDER
($250 per year); COMMODORE ($500 per year); ADMIRAL ($1,000 per
year) and LIFETIME (a one-time contribution of $2,500). All members
receive discounts to Foundation events, and Commanders and above
are listed prominently (at their option) on a placard which is
displayed at Foundation HQ and at major events.
to our membership information page.
BECOME A VOLUNTEER!
The Foundation could not operate without its dedicated volunteers,
who not only donate time to the Archives, but also staff all Foundation
events. In addition to providing invaluable help to the nonprofit
Foundation, volunteers have an unbeatable opportunity to meet
and socialize with artists, collectors, and a terrific group of
other volunteers. The Foundation hosts several social events for
volunteers each year, including a summer BBQ and a Holiday potluck.
We are constantly seeking volunteers, and we invite you to sign
up! Even if you donít live in Los Angeles or New York, you can
help the Foundation in its mission. Please contact the Foundation
for more info.
to our Volunteers Page.
to our event page.
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o m o f F i n l a n d F o
u n d a t i o n
years of dedication to
protecting, preserving and promoting erotic art