CROTON FALLS, N.Y. – Tom Christopher, local artist and owner of Lift Trucks Project in Croton Falls, appeared on Fox News’s “Fox & Friends” recently, where he created his visual image of the “fiscal cliff” on the telecast.
“I don’t exactly know what the ‘fiscal cliff’ is, but it sounds horrible. People seem terrified that it’s like ‘Thelma and Louise’,” Christopher said, referring to the 1991 film starring Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis, which concludes with the two friends driving over the edge of a cliff.
“Personally, I think the fiscal cliff is something immobile, so I’m going to begin with a painting I’ve started with a lamp post smack in the middle.” As the artist got to work, the program's hosts continued with other guests.
“I wasn’t at all nervous,” said Christopher. “I can paint anywhere. I don’t get nervous when I’m doing something I love."
Though born in Hollywood, Christopher has earned a reputation as a New York City artist, a thoughtful interpreter of its streets, its people, its vitality and its undercurrents. The New Yorker magazine said, "Monet had his water lilies and Tom Christopher has Times Square."
Christopher’s work has been shown worldwide and is in museums in Stockholm, Sweden; Frankfurt, Germany;, New York;, Washington, D.C., and elsewhere, and in many private collections as well.
When the TV hosts returned later in the show to see what Christopher had accomplished, the artist displayed a painting he described as “gridlock. It’s a New York street, where everybody is caught at a standstill. A bus is stuck, a man is waiting for a text message, a split-tailed swallow is flying in with a Dear John letter. A guy with a bike is going nowhere.”
The assignment was a challenge. "If you know my work, you know there’s usually a lot of flowing movement. You can feel the roar of the traffic. My paintings are always on the edge of chaos,” he said.
Describing his TV debut later on, Christopher said, “My son and I were picked up at 4 a.m. When we got to the studio, Cardinal Dolan was there, waiting to go on. It was a madhouse. While I waited, I felt something biting my ankle. It was one of the 18 pygmy goats, scheduled to go on next.”