This story was published on June 15 in the West Sussex Gazette. Read the original story at westsussextoday.co.uk/news/county-news/thompson-hall-s-work-revisits-ideas-of-space-1-7429983.]
Over the last couple of months, Brighton has been awash with arts, music, dance, lights, theatre and comedy as part of the annual Festival and Fringe events.
Amongst the many cultural events hosted by Brighton this year is HOUSE 2016, which ran until May 29 as part of Brighton Festival.
As part of this event, one particular artist had taken over Brighton’s Regency Town House, covering two rooms with his paintings.
Thompson Hall’s exhibition, entitled Home Away From Home, was a newly commissioned set of paintings in which Thompson had reimagined views from his home in North London and views from his visits to Brighton.
Outside In, which is a platform for artists who see themselves as facing barriers to the art world founded by Chichester’s Pallant House Gallery, co-commissioned this exhibition.
Thompson is also a member of ActionSpace, which supports the development of artists with learning disabilities in a professional studio at Cockpit Arts, London.
I felt that Thompson’s artwork is bold, bright, and evocative, enabling the audience to experience not only the view of a space, but also the emotional association of the artist with the environment.
Many of his works feature outsized, long -legged creatures which dominate the space depicted in the painting.
The artist, who works in a variety of media and specialises in acrylic paint and pastel, said that he wanted the paintings to “give the feeling of being somewhere else, besides your home, and the mixed emotions this creates.”
Thompson said: “First I create preliminary sketches, and then I decide which pictures to paint on canvas. I paint the strong black lines, and then I add the colour. I like to start with black on white and then I think about what colours would work well together, such as opposite colours.
“When I paint the monsters, I am creating an emotional dialogue with things that are happening at home, and how things are making me feel.
“Painting is a way of letting out frustration and conveying this to people. By using colours, textures, and differing elements, I hope that people can relate to my work straight away. I’m very interested in mirrors, and the idea of reflecting how I see the world.”
Thompson’s work was shown alonside Turner Prize winner Gillian Wearing OBS, and the work of artist Felicity Hammond as part of HOUSE 2016.
Jennifer Gilbert, manager of Outside In at the Pallant House Gallery, said: “For Outside In it is an exciting prospect for Thompson to be able to grow as an artist and to learn new skills around developing, describing and curating his art work within a mainstream setting alongside Gillian Wearing and Felicity Hammond. For Thompson to be seen as a mainstream contemporary artist is a big step in his career to date. Congratulations to Thompson on being selected.”
To see more of Thompson’s work, and to find out more about Outside In, visit www.outsidein.org.uk/Thompson-Hall.