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Thomas J Price

Reaching Out, 2020

Silicon bronze 290 x 90 x 86 cm

Thomas J Price’s practice engages with issues of representation and perception. Through sculpture, film and photography, Price invites us to look deeper into our interpersonal experiences and the mental processes that inform them. Price plays with methods of presentation, material, scale, and detail in order to challenge viewers’ expectations. His work confronts the possibilities of misinterpretation, which he often does through figuration that examines stereotypical fears and questions assumptions. These figurative sculptures function as psychological portraits, initially all hand sculpted with clay and now also incorporating digital sculpting techniques to blend various references. They are borne through an intense process of sculpting whether physically or virtually.

Price’s decision to almost exclusively depict black characters, individuals of African heritage, reflects his desire, born of his own experiences, to bring to the fore the inadequate and troubling representations of black people in today’s media, as well as throughout history. In this way their blackness is both a reminder of Price’s search for truth and a microcosm of how the societies in which we live construct the value systems that affect us all.

Reaching Out is Price’s first individual full figure representation of a woman, and one of very few public sculptures of a black woman in the UK (the first being a short distance from where Price grew up). This new work, depicting a young woman standing holding a mobile phone in both hands, continues Price’s theme of balancing experiences of isolation and connectedness, whilst acknowledging the different ways in which technology mediates our lives.

Courtesy the artist

Biography

Thomas J Price (b.1981, London) studied Sculpture at Chelsea College of Art (2001-04) and received an MA from the Royal College of Art (2004-06). Price has exhibited widely in the UK, including solo shows at the National Portrait Gallery (2016) and Yorkshire Sculpture Park (2014). Price’s first international institution show took place in 2019 at The Power Plant in Toronto, Canada. His work is included in a number of public and private collections including Derwent London, Damien Hirst’s Murderme collection (UK) and the Rennie Collection (Canada). In 2020 Price was commissioned by Hackney Council to honour the Windrush Generation with a public sculpture, which will be placed outside Hackney Town Hall in 2021. Price lives and works in London.