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Jeremy Thomas: Canvas
July 22, 2022 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
A gentle sloping curve. A twist. A shadowed dimple, a ripple. Orange-red that passes through all the stages into red-violet. Pale blue frosted with yellow. Glowing yellow morphing into green. Strange underwater creatures, microscopic life, alien animals. Around the gallery arranged on shelves, on walls, these forms are arrayed. Those who have followed Thomas’s work over the years—tracking the many elaborations and changes of Thomas’s inflated steel works will be challenged and surprised to find that these strange and remarkable forms are made from canvas.
At the beginning of the pandemic, with the world feeling full of darkness, Thomas began to experiment with canvas—liking, again, that it had a lighter ecological footprint—and adapting forms from lantern patterns to quite literally try to create some light in a dark time.
Enjoying the material, Thomas went on to explore further with heavyweight hemp fabric and then organic cotton canvas. He developed a unique process to coat the canvas in an ecologically responsible resin, then inflate his fabric forms while wet, allowing him to gently manipulate them before they are cured to a hard and shining state. Color can be applied both within the resin itself, or afterward on the hard surface.
Even though they are hard-cured, the canvas pieces feel different, softer, more accessible. As Thomas recognizes—each material brings its own freight of associations—and while steel has its hard and unapproachable aspects, canvas and fabric bring with them a very long and quite intimate association with humans and the human body.
Equal parts joyful and thoughtful, Canvas brings us a whole new world to explore, with pieces that challenge our preconceived ideas of what canvas can do and be.