Thomas is an English painter based in Asia. His visceral works utilize the human figure/head juxtaposed with abstract mark making and are derived from the process of physically painting the head/figure. In that the form is revealed or searched for through the application and dragging of paint.
The figure/portrait is a traditional subject within the history of painting, is easily recognizable, has been painted over and over again and we’re all familiar with the figure, our own and other peoples. This familiarity with the subject and notions of beauty allows him to develop the process through abstraction, mark making and impasto and at the end still have something that remains familiar but slightly awkward.
We live in world where we are now subjected to countless images of over photo-shopped perfection of the portrait and body. So Donaldson’s paintings are hopefully a counter balance to this through the use of uneven surface textures and blotches of paint. Creating a sort of in-perfect or flawed beauty.
He use various techniques including thickly applied impasto paint, dragging and smudging the paint surface plus the occasional intervention of a ‘happy accident’ or chance. All these abstract traits contribute in the process of making or constructing a painting. Although the works are representational and figurative they intend to suggest, rather than depict an accurate observation of the subject. This is more apparent as the viewer approaches the work, the painted surface dissolves into a seemingly unorganized abstract arrangement of blotches and irregular textures resembling abstract paintings. The works also acknowledge certain aspects of the existentialist premise that one cannot fully know or experience the reality of another person, and that this separateness underlies our daily consciousness. As most of the heads and figures are not anatomically complete, that is you only see a cropped section or vague shape of the portrait or figure.
We live in world where we are now subjected to countless images of over photo-shopped perfection of the portrait and body. These paintings are hopefully a counter balance to this through the use of uneven surface textures and blotches of paint. Creating a sort of in-perfect or flawed beauty.
head study in impasto oils on canvas