Jan 31, 2015 | artists, art, paintings, drawing

An Icy Blast from Mark Thompson

All images reproduced with kind permission of the artist. I’d urge you to visit his website and see them in high resolution to fully appreciate them.

Mark Thompson, To be titled

To be titled © Mark Thompson

I love Mark Thompson’s paintings because there is so much to them – they resist simple definition. On the one hand no one has ever communicated the freezing cold better – it’s hard to imagine less romantic winter scenes. On the other hand they are far from bleak. His innovative painting techniques brilliantly capture the transient effects of harsh weather, and yet these are not transient moments – there feels to be something eternal about them. “There’s always a picture inside your head, an internal landscape that you are trying to find, an equivalent to the external world”  In other words these are his impressions, his observations filtered through memory and his own experience.

Mark Thompson, Revealed Wounds

Revealed Wounds © Mark Thompson

Mark Thompson, All the days stolen

All The Days Stolen © Mark Thompson

Thompson, a Slade gradutate who now lives in Sweden, comes originally from the Fens in East Anglia and so obviously has grown up with an interest in the most wide-open wild skies seen in that region. His paintings suggest a real isolation of the little houses or evidence of human habitation – roads, little telegraph wires – struggling to survive in the deep freeze. They are terribly dramatic and you sense that in the battle between ‘civilisation’ and wilderness, it is nature who will win.

Mark Thompson, To Separate Strands

To Separate Strands © Mark Thompson

Thompson’s  method is to make notes and drawings and take photographs when he visits these frozen locations – the resulting painting therefore representing his memory and sitting somewhere between that memory and reality. He says “The paintings are in part a reconstruction of what I have seen, in part a discovery of the ideal I am searching for.”

Mark Thompson, Waiting for You

Waiting For You © Mark Thompson

“My colour choices have evolved over time into quite a muted hue range. Colour in the usual sense of the word is incidental and comes as a result of the process, however each colour is chosen rather than arbitrary. An unpopulated place seems to automatically have a sense of loss about it, but I think there is an inherent melancholy present in both my paintings and photographs, since they are both concerned with memory and time passing or time gone”

Mark Thompson, The Slow Pass Of Time

The Slow Pass Of Time © Mark Thompson

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