Lot 16 - Tomas Harker - Sciaridae
Tomas Harker’s works address the nature of meaning in conditions of mediated experience and hyperreal saturation. Over the last several years, the artist’s practice has increasingly blurred the lines between fairytale and reality, often by subtly manipulating notions of the uncanny. The mythologies leaking into his recent works are not simply an exploration of fantasy, however; rather, they act as a point of entry to the abstract network of thoughts through which they come into being, suggesting that a real-world circumstance is not quite what it seems. Existing on the fringes of popular culture, Harker's practice often draws from a variety of image production and distribution systems in an attempt to make sense of a cosmic order becoming increasingly disordered. His paintings reflect the increasing murkiness and confusion of contemporary life, whilst remaining mindful of the dynamics of power benefiting from uncertainty.
In spite of their relationship to complex, significant systemic and social issues, Tomas’s work manages to retain a lightness of touch, a sense of irreverence, through the inclusion of mythical aesthetics. Unlike magical realism, however, his paintings act as thought experiments – providing the viewer with material by which interpretative systems can be created. They insist that we move beyond defined aesthetic language and into a mode of thinking capable of establishing connections between disparate chunks of metaphor, reference and symbolism as a means of better understanding the physical sensations capable of dominating experience, opinion and existence. Tomas’s works therefore venture into a new realm, where representations of the unreal are presented as symbols, or emissaries, of alternate understandings.
2018-2020 MA Painting, Royal College of Art, London
2015-2018 BA Fine Art, Leeds Arts University, Leeds
Selected solo exhibitions include: Multiple Choice Fairytale Ending, The Sunday Painter, London, UK (2023) I haven’t been Sleeping, Screw Gallery, Leeds, UK (2021); Third Nature, Copeland Gallery, London, UK (2021); A Sea in Suspense, Bo.lee Gallery, London, UK (2019). Group exhibitions include: New Ancients, Guts Gallery, London, UK (2023); The Artist is Present, Guts Gallery, London, UK (2022) Apotrope, Cob Gallery, London, UK (2022); Bloomberg New Contemporaries, South London Gallery, London, UK (2021); There’s something about Painting, Tatjana Pieters, Ghent, Belgium (2019); Cite, Bo.lee gallery, London, UK (2018); Syzygy, Leeds Arts University, Leeds, UK (2018). In 2018, Harker was awarded the Ingram Collection purchase prize.
The Sunday Painter
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