Jeremy THOMAS Tanked March 11 – April 29, 2017
Jean-Luc and Takako Richard are very pleased to present the first personal exhibition of Jeremy Thomas in France titled “Tanked” from March 11th to April 29th, 2017. Jeremy Thomas was born in Mount Vernon, Ohio, in 1973 and lives and works in New Mexico. As he explains: "to me, working in material, it's a back-and-forth between the artists says this, the material says that". By injecting air into malleable steel that's heated to about 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, he creates and develops a complete new vocabulary of spontaneous, organic, and sensual shapes that playfully mix in other three-dimensional abstract languages.
His discovery of metalworking arose from experimenting with the possibilities of the material more than from pure conceptual way. “Steel”, Thomas says, “is quite malleable and actually a lot like clay (though admittedly it only exhibits those characteristics at upwards of 2000 degrees Fahrenheit)”. After welding forms together and then subsequently heating them, Thomas injects them with pressurized air, inflating, or “growing” them into their final shape. Finally, he paints them with metallic car paint. In the case of some of the smallest pieces, he used nail lacquer for the first time, which expanded his range of colors. The largest sculptures are inflated without the heating process by adding air pressure into cold forms progressively. He can also ingeniously reverse the process and deflate them using a special technique. Occasionally, his sculptures can explode during the process; Thomas is a risk taker playing with the limits of the material’s resistance. The exhibition at the gallery presents new sculptures that are part inflated and part deflated.
Jeremy Thomas visually, technically, and conceptually unifies dualities, paradoxes and oxymorons: steel carefully molded by air, a creative process that mixes planned processes and expectations of the general shapes with the unpredictability of results in the details and parts of the sculptures. The sensual three-dimensional shapes come from strict geometrical assembled flat panels, a play between natural, rusted surfaces of the sculptures and their glossy, painted counterparts. Additionally, feminine and masculine symbolism coincides within the same sculpture, along with an inflating process and a deflating process among the different facets. Jeremy Thomas is also a great colorist. Every color is unique and very meticulously selected to combine with each unique form and with the color of the rusty surface.
Visitors stay for a long time during the exhibition. The vision of each sculpture changes so drastically from one angle to another, that it is a true experience of discovery just by walking around each one.
Jeremy Thomas’ works are included in the Albright–Knox Gallery in Buffalo, NY, the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art in Scottsdale, AZ, and the New Mexico Museum of Fine Arts in Santa Fe, NM. Additionally, The Fredrick R. Wiesman Art Foundation in Malibu, CA as well as Fidelity Investments of Albuquerque, NM, collect his works.