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discern: a tomas rowell exhibition

We are pleased to welcome our next artist; Tomas Rowell to Digbeth Art Space with his new exhibition: discern, previewing on Friday 21st June from 18:00 to 20:30. Tomas has exhibited in London, Leeds, Manchester and other parts of the UK and we are delighted to be hosting his Birmingham debut.

There will live pieces created daily from Monday 17th and Friday 21st June between 17:00 and 20:30 and please feel free to join us. In his own words, Tomas talks about his background, work and inspirations.

I grew up in Birmingham and moved away from the area as a toddler with my parents. As my work has developed, so too has my admiration for the architecture and industrial enhancement of Birmingham and I felt an overwhelming desire to move back to the area. I love living in the city and the surrounding architecture and movement of any city instantly provides a flourish of creativity. I find walking through the streets around midnight to be the most impactful. It is as if the movement of the city is captured like that of a photograph and for a split second and for a split second like that of a photo, but the intensity is not lost. I also think the intensity is somehow amplified, through the artificial lighting.

I studied at Leeds College of Art from 2011 – 2014, expanding upon a persistently exploration into paintings ability to remove any imitation or possible foreign associations. Upon discovering Kazimir Malevich’s work I had a profound sense of admiration from both Suprematism and Minimalism, with a significant valuation of Black Square. The infinite nature of the black is a representational form of limitlessness or endlessness in scale, form, size and space; impossible to measure or calculate. This idea has been a continual notion within my work, attempting to master the character behind bold geometric shaping, particularly that of black forms.

I have persistently experimented with painting; understanding it's ability to confront the physical qualities of art over an external embodiment. The physical depth of the artwork overpowers the traditional views of painting, granting a sculptural approach to minimalist art. There is a structure applied through the use of dramatic colour and geometric shapes that implements a sense of harmony through simplicity. When observed closely, the work unnerves the viewer by denying balance. The reflective nature of metal paint confuses the viewpoint, leaving a sense of instability. Each piece is signed on the back of the canvas itself, in order to keep the cleansed like nature to the painting immaculate.

Surprisingly, my favourite colour is black. In order to add sustainability in my work, there has always been an articulate eradication of any unnecessary elements to painting. This has led to my fascination in black, being the most instinctive but also unnatural colour. Black is clearly the most influential tone within my current work. With black being scientifically classed as an impossible colour, the eye is subconsciously drawn to it, offering instinctive depth.

discern can be seen at Digbeth Art Space, Zellig, Gibb Street, Digbeth, Birmingham, B9 4AT between June 21 and July 04 daily from 10:00 - 19:00

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