2 March – 30 March 2022
Fox Galleries presents Peter Thomas‘ solo exhibition Hypernormal, with a series of abstract paintings and works on paper. Thomas’ multifarious process evolved from the tensions between aesthetic beauty and reflections on failure, navigating the discomfort of imperfection in art and in life.
Thomas’ Hypernormal series poetically echoes the quagmire we find ourselves in; the new normal. It is within this space Thomas is able to incite a raw and visceral response through his afflicted surfaces, a mark making that has distinguished his practice. A complex execution of action painting foundations layered with vivid geometrical shapes. Each work on paper is imprinted with Thomas’ gesture, identified with fragments of smoke, fire, charcoal that elegantly hold themes of societal imperfection.
Just as minimalists used their voice to engage critical thought, Peter Thomas’ Hypernormal, presents a series of robust works as a reminder of what it takes to exist within the environment.
When I think about it, I’ve been interested in failure for a long time. Ever since I saw Melvyn Bragg interviewing Francis Bacon as a teenager I realised the power of failure in painting. It’s kind of easy to think about failure in art though, less so in life.
For me these pictures are about failure and the failed attempts to mitigate it by people, governments, businesses and societal structures. We’re in a new normal, or have the 2020s just exposed a normal that was always there?
Regardless, we’ve always known there is beauty in the chaotic… and I try to make beautiful things complete with all the contradiction and failure that can entail.
– Peter Thomas, 2022
2009-2010 Master of Fine Art (research), VCA
2008 Postgraduate Diploma of Visual Art, VCA
1994 – 1996 Bachelor of Arts (Fine Arts – Printmaking) RMIT University
2017 Finalist, Hadley’s Art Prize
2016 Finalist, Paul Guest Prize
2015 Finalist, M Collection Award
2012 Stuart Black Memorial Travelling Scholarship
2012 Finalist, Swan Hill Acquisitive Print and Drawing Awards
2010 Athenaeum Club Acquisitive Award winner
2010 Australian Postgraduate Award Scholarship
2010 Friends of the VCA Arts Grant Recipient
2009 Friends of the VCA Arts Grant Recipient
2008 Finalist for The Athenaeum Club Award
SELECTED RECENT EXHIBITIONS
2019 Aftermath (solo), Fox Galleries, Melbourne
2018 Manipulations (solo), Fox Galleries, Melbourne
2017 Hadley’s Art Prize exhibition, Galleries at Hadley’s Orient Hotel, Hobart
2016 Night Club (solo), Fox Galleries, Melbourne
2016 Paul Guest Award exhibition, Bendigo Art Gallery, Bendigo
2015 UnCollected Works (solo), Rubicon ARI, Melbourne
2014 NotFair 2014, Grace Darling Hotel, Melbourne
2013 Coma Country (solo), Linden Contemporary Art, Melbourne