Essex landscapes, soft porn and photos from the Artists Rifles regiment are amongst the subjects in Barry Thompson's forthcoming exhibition of intricate work on paper and small scale paintings at PEER.
One source has been a World War One photo album found in the holdings of the Imperial War Museum. The photographs of Lieutenant F.H. Ennor's friends in the volunteer regiment were taken while posted at Thompson's home town of Romford. The images resonated with Thompson's memories of his own adolescent years and fed directly into larger body of work based in and around this area of Essex.
Thompson's work deals with sites of memory both literally and psychologically, tackling themes of ideals/failure, hope/pessimism, fact/fiction and love/loss. He considers that attempting to work with these universal themes through the process of drawing has enabled him to engage with personal memories on a very intimate scale.
Thompson currently lives and works in London. He holds an MA from the Royal College of Art and a BA from University of East London. Previous group shows include There is a place…, New Art Gallery, Walsall and Hope & Despair, Cell Project Space, London.
He received the Jessica Wilkes Award in 2015/16 as a studio holder at Acme Studios. The Jessica Wilkes Award provides a major opportunity, funded and managed by Acme Studios to the value of £10,000, for an Acme tenant to develop their practice at a key point in their career. Barry was the sixth recipient of this award and for this particular year Ingrid Swenson, (Director PEER), has worked closely with Barry towards a solo show, additionally supported by Acme and PEER as a partner gallery.