Frederick Weston was born in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1946, and raised in Detroit, Michigan, where he participated in the club scene before moving to New York City in the mid-1970s. He studied menswear design and marketing at the Fashion Institute of Technology. He is a self-taught interdisciplinary artist who works in varied media: collage, drawing, sculpture, photography, performance, and creative writing. Over the course of his time in New York, he has developed a vast, encyclopedic archive of images and ephemera related to fashion, the body, advertising, AIDS, and queer subjects. He currently lives and works in his apartment in New York City.
Weston has exhibited his work widely in group exhibitions: Tag: Proposals on Queer Play and the Ways Forward, Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania (curated by Nayland Blake); This Must Be the Place, 55 Walker, NY (curated by O.O. & M.M. and Miles Huston); Inside, Out Here, La MaMa Galleria, NY (curated by Eric Booker); A Page from My Intimate Journal (Part I)—, Gordon Robichaux, NY; Found, Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, NY (curated by Avram Finkelstein); CUT HERE (with Matt Keegan and Siobhan Liddell), Gordon Robichaux, NY; Queer Artist Fellowship: Alternate Routes, Leslie-Lohman Project Space, NY (curated by Osman Can Yerebakan); and Persons of Interest, Bureau of General Services, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community Center, NY (curated by Sam Gordon).
In addition to numerous panels and readings organized by Visual AIDS, Weston has participated in Queer Artists of Color in New York during the AIDS Epidemic, College Art Association of America, 2019 Annual Conference, NY; Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: Smithsonian Archives of American Art Symposium, Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; Fag, Stag, or Drag?, John Neff and Frederick Weston in Conversation, Artists Space, NY; Three Readings: Wayne Koestenbaum, Darinka Novitovic, and Frederick Weston, Gordon Robichaux, NY. In 2017, an oral history with Weston, by Ted Kerr, was published by the Smithsonian Archives of American Art for Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: An Oral History Project.
His work has been lauded by Holland Cotter in The New York Times on two occasions and by Jerry Saltz in New York Magazine’s Vulture.