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Esmé Thompson: Recent Paintings

April 6 @ 11:00 am - 6:00 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 11:00 am on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, repeating until April 20, 2024


Exhibition Dates: March 26 – April 20, 2024

Opening Reception: Thurs, March 28, 2024, 5PM-8PM

Closing Salon: Sat, April 20, 3PM-5PM, featuring an artist talk by Esmé Thompson, a reading by Jen Stock, and music by Molly Thompson and ensemble


Bowery Gallery is pleased to present the latest evolution of painted, shaped, and layered panels by Esmé Thompson.  Grouped in lively rapport on gallery walls, the exhibition is a thoughtfully choreographed dance of color and design.  Surprising intersections and overlaps intrigue the eye from afar, while varying surfaces invite closer inspection.  From any distance and at any scale, Thompson’s alchemy of design, pattern, and color reveals itself like layers of treasure, animated throughout by energy and invention.


The visual vocabulary of this work feels both historically familiar yet contemporary.  Its abstraction is universal, while its touch and sources are distinctly personal.  Thompson develops beautifully intricate color relationships without losing her exuberance of spirit.  Moments of delicate balance are interrupted by vigorous squiggle, solid surfaces are punctuated by open air, and complex relationships of two-and three-dimensional space are relieved by a dash of whimsy. Structure and impulse complement each other, guided by a disciplined eye and demanding intent. 


Thompson says: 

“I have designed this new body of work to have a topography of stacked wooden shapes that weave and wind, connecting and disconnecting throughout and implying natural forces both large and small.  Whether it be the shifting tides or winds found in nature (Coriolis), or the unfolding of a flower (Helianthus), the paintings are intended to animate and move across the wall, interacting with each other.  I seek to make paintings that blur the boundaries between high and low art and celebrate objects people have made throughout time and across cultures.  My work represents possibility and embodies change. The repeated, interrelated images are meant to allow for a cyclical and cumulative, rather than linear, reading.  The experience of viewing the painting becomes a journey that continues to unfold, reminiscent of an ongoing pattern of organic growth.” 

Thompson’s travels inform and enliven her art.  She has been a resident of the Rockefeller Foundation and the Bogliasco Foundation in Italy studying medieval painting and decorative arts.  She has travelled to Morocco to study ceramic and fiber art, Ireland to study Celtic manuscripts and lacemaking and Australia to view aboriginal art in Kakadu and Uluru. Thompson lives in New Hampshire and is Emeritus Professor of Studio Art at Dartmouth College.     


Image: Blue Streak, acrylic on wood, 53″ x 116″, 2023


April 6
11:00 am - 6:00 pm


Bowery Gallery
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Esmé Thompson
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Bowery Gallery
547 W. 27th St., Suite 508
New York, NY 10001 United States
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(646) 230-6655
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