ref: i3l Apr 6-28 2017 CYRIL GERBER FINE ART & COMPASS GALLERY Peter Thomson - Open a 'pdf' of this press release - return to Galleries PR Index


Peter Thomson Light Box New and Recent Paintings

6 - 28 April 2017

Compass Gallery

178 West Regent Street, Glasgow G2 4RL

Peter Thomson Hermes oil on panel 55 x 80 cms

Compass Gallery is proud to be presenting a new exhibition by one of Scotland’s

most dedicated and talented painters, Peter Thomson. He has had numerous solo

exhibitions with us since his first major show in 1995 after graduating from Glasgow

School of Art.

The many admirers and collectors familiar with the subject and style of Peters

paintings will have a startling surprise. In his newest work, he seems to challenge

himself and his viewers to change direction and their expectations of his more

familiar style and subject matter.

Thomson is a serious minded and responsible artist, constantly observing, thinking

and responding to the world around him, but his underlying success as a painter is

deeply rooted in his inner passions and constant exploration and admiration of the

20th Century Masters. The Post Impressionist style of painting continues to be a

major influence; Vuillard, Bonnard, Seurat, Sickert are amongst the artists whose

painting he believes remain unsurpassed. He says “The importance to me is that I

consider these painters to have regarded their subject matter as being equally

crucial as exploring the inherent qualities and possibilities of the materials they

used.” Examining the technique and handling of the images inspires him. Studying

images of Degas and Rembrandt are now vehicles for developing and exploring his

own skills in creating some of his newest paintings. (“Combing the hair, after Degas”)

and (“Hendricke Bathing, after Rembrandt”).

So why does Peter paint these subjects? Thomson acknowledges that certain ideas

and passions deep within himself certainly resonate subconsciously, for example, his

enjoyment in Greek mythology and his sporting interests. They are formed and

developed over many years and intuitively permeate his thoughts and working

methods. Peter paints what he is passionate about. Painting in the wake of artists

like of Edward Hopper, and Vilhelm Hammershoi interests him and they are, he

feels, closest to the spirit or sensibility of his own paintings. (“Junction”) and

(“Briggait Wash Area”). Inspired by their handling of paint he is also influenced by

their daring subject matter, themes and concerns of the day. Thomson is enthused

by the subdued portraits and interiors of these Post Impressionist artists and their

muted tones continue to display much influence.

Thomson feels that painting should always be organic in its nature and for it to be

more subjective in meaning and he feels that, how paintings are read is influenced

by an individual’s personal life experiences. He is not concerned about creating

something that has a particular meaning or purpose yet, observing this new body of

painting, they clearly do.

These paintings are his “observations of the unremarkable and unspectacular” to

him everything is endlessly interesting. However, the paintings reflect his daily

journey through life. They are often bustling and intriguing, they shout quietly about

his own personal thoughts and experiences. (“Hermes”) and (Workshop”).

Accidental discoveries throw up endlessly interesting visual inspiration behind which

lies deeply personal thoughtfulness and explanation. A recent trigger of inspiration

was during an afternoon in his studio attic, when Peter stood on an old television set

by accident; the broken item, its wires and inner workings inadvertently interested


The stark, empty abandoned phone boxes offering shelter (“Phone Box, Aikenhead

Road”) and (“Phone Box, Cathcart”) perhaps are a reflection on the experience and

challenges a serious and committed artist such as Thomson must endure. There is

still an abiding interest in landscape, but his sharp observation of the disintegration

of industrial, statuesque objects such as the rusting carcass of an abandoned

helicopter (“Abandoned Helicopter, Thornhill”) and the acid burned car batteries, we

wonder are perhaps metaphors for a variety of contemporary issues and his

commitment to his own conscience and political ideologies. Other paintings in the

show are gentle and poignant, always deeply personal and thought provoking

(“Tiagh Liath an Gleann Feshie).

This is a strong and unique exhibition not to be missed and we look forward to

opening the gallery doors on the opening evening of 6th April 2017.

For further information and images contact:

Jill Gerber, Charli Summers or Jane Reith on 0141 221 6370