Elizabeth Thomson's recent series of abstracted aerial perspectives recall something of the artist's epic botanical topographical sculptures that emerged out of her practice more than a decade ago. While much of Thomson's work has become increasingly preoccupied with a microscopic or cellular view, these works see the artist magnify her vision to absorb the unearthly qualities of a more expansive topography; the landscape unfurling itself to reveal all manner of latent references.
'In mid-winter 2018 and again last year, I was artist in residence in the Queensbury Hills, between Cromwell and Wanaka, Central Otago. The residency was a converted boat shed high up in the hills looking across the Clutha Basin to the St Bathans Range and down the valley to Lake Hawea. A very dramatic, remarkable landscape, the light could change markedly within seconds depending on sun, cloud and that mysterious inversion layer mist. Early morning and later in the day were the most extraordinary ... The valley floor was a patchwork of ordered plantings, grapevines and shelterbelts.'
Cubist Encounters resists traditional regional notions of landscape painting. Incorporating manipulated photographic material, and with flat planes of bold colour, the works in this series are at once abstract and otherworldly, while remaining equally devoted to the tangible, fragile nature of earthly terrain. Thomson has found a fresh direction in this evolving series– one that looks to the past through multiple art-historical allusions but is grounded in Thomson's own personal experiences with her uniquely lyrical perspective, meticulous conception, and immaculate execution.
Press release courtesy Page Galleries.