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Painting (MA)

Tom Harker

 Born 1990 in Worksop, Nottinghamshire. Lives and works in London  

Previously studied at Leeds Arts University from 2015 to 2018. Recipient of the Ingram
Collection Purchase prize in 2018. Recent solo exhibitions at bo.lee Gallery,
London, 2019, The Lightbox museum, Woking, 2019 and Volta, New York, 2020.   




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Degree Details

School of Arts & Humanities

Painting (MA)

I stayed in a haunted hotel, terrified of the noises and
shadows at night. You know something is there and it wants to do you harm but
its hard to see. The layout was like a labyrinth and most rooms are closed off
and uninhabitable.
Locked doors, with things inside we
would rather not face. We would not bother to enter, but know that they reveal
themselves in the space between one state and another, pushing through the
cracks. The communion is internal, like an inner vision, the thoughts do not feel
like your own. It’s the feeling of profound meditations, ancient wisdom, and tired


A surface wiped clean to forget the
abyss. With mass caught in the unfathomable undercurrents. The world is fluid.
It gives the sense you can move freely. At times it’s uneasy because there is
nothing to hold onto to. Skimming your hand in the water, it feels thick like
butter, suspended. Everything is in play, unbounded and
accessible, atemporal and deterritorialized. The ambivalence of floating
through space, through collective imagination, through
the subconscious mind.  

There’s the presence of the hand set
in the material. The illusory surface and paintings
own inheritance, which lives like a
specters will.
Fragments are cut and pasted from
linear hierarchies, and slip between categories. Drawing from the complex
histories behind them, easy travel is resisted as new sets of associations are conspired.

A sea in suspense, a sea of sewage. What was imagined was just a projection. Rising glamorous and paranoid from the hygienic surface. They see the divers through a soup of lame fantasy, an astral tour of frigid spectral visions.


Shroud, 110x130cm


Ancient Philosophers, 60x100cm & Trap, 51x61cm

Token(Fear), 30x35cm


Energy Lines, 60x75cm & Astral Fishing Trip Projection, 70x90cm


Relics re-imagined, like ancient stones that crumble at the march of new regimes, where artifacts are put to use building new mythologies.

Orion watches over and keeps us safe. We’re in everybody and they are in us. We saw our own deaths and selves turn to dust. We saw the animal, the beast; we saw its desperate eyes and snarling teeth and forgave it. Mirages, the things we thought we needed as we suffered on the cross, we were the devil and the saints, reborn and revived and feeling everything all at once the future spiralled and gave up its hostility, giving way to sensation.

Eden was before Adam and Eve knew the snake’s secret. That was Eden, and animal ignorance was bliss. No future or fantasy, the kingdom.


Oil on canvas


oil paintingpainting

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