Photo: Fern Thomas in Swansea, Wales

Fern Thomas

Artist, Writer, Lecturer / academic, Researcher

Fascinated by slowness, silence, mountain, river, bell and stone; Fern Thomas seeks to explore her relationship with the ecological, archetypal and mythological world around her. Manifesting in action, live or documented, her process-led and intuitive explorations often take the form of a physical interaction or 'meeting' between herself and a place, a dream, a history or another being. Focusing on simple transformative gestures or responsive actions, Thomas allows for a slow and careful dialogue to reveal what is hidden, buried or lost. April 2011 ............................................................................................................................................. 'Fern Thomas is acutely aware of the delicate yet critical relationship between humans and their environment. In an attempt to connect directly with the 'natural world' she volunteers representations of the 'animal world' to act as mediators for this purpose [...]' Tim Davies, Curator of Ground, 2009 ............................................................................................................................................ 'Fern Thomas's Creation Stories, a series of unflinching physical gestures made direct to camera, echoed early performance work such as that of Bruce Nauman or Robert Morris, and yet powerfully portrayed the inseparable union between violence and creativity in basic actions of body. The slowed down footage of clapping hands, dropping a rock or throwing mud at the wall, all pretty innocuous acts in themselves, provoked horror and rapt fascination as slowing down the footage made each act sound like an explosion. The final metaphorical gesture of blowing flour from cupped hands at the camera was particularly successful, as the thundering sound was accompanied by a visual explosion ominously reminiscent of the white-out of a nuclear blast.' Colin Glen First published: a-n Magazine August 2007 'In slowing down a series of performative gestures which can be seen as metaphors for violent acts, as though 'sculpting' with time, Thomas explores the relationship between violence and creation, producing a slow motion video; a kind of temporal magnifying glass, in which we are aware of the artist becoming object within her own work.' Zoë Shearman, May 2007 read full statement

Location Swansea, Wales
Activities Lecturing, Practice-based research, Residencies, Participatory projects, Events management
Artforms / type of project Live Art, Participatory, Research, Sound, Text