Art raising questions at The Lightbox

THE artistic skill of emerging artists will go on display when the Young Contemporary Talent exhibition opens at The Lightbox gallery in Woking on Saturday.

The event is part of the annual series of solo shows by artists who have won The Ingram Collection’s Purchase Prize for Young Contemporary Talent, which has been running since 2016.

Several of the artists featured in recent years, such as Haroon Mirza, Suki Chan and Victoria Sin, have already gained international reputations. The prize is open to visual artists who are within five years of their graduation from a UK art school. It was set up to celebrate and support the work of artists at the outset of their careers.

Orange Scarf, oil on canvas, by Tomas Harker, is one of the paintings going on show at The Lightbox

Each year, one of the winners of the prize is given the opportunity to stage a solo show at the Lightbox and this 2019 exhibition will showcase new work from Tomas Harker, alongside pieces he chose from The Ingram Collection which will accompany his paintings on display.

After studying at Leeds Art University, Harker is currently undertaking an MA in painting at the Royal College of Art, London. His artistic practice explores the use of paint’s material qualities as a means of reinterpreting images, both classical and contemporary, drawing on the complex histories behind them.

Harker’s paintings are often ambiguous, leaving out information and sparsely reproducing details. “For this exhibition I wanted to create new associations, mirroring and juxtaposing the works from The Ingram Collection with my own while thinking about painting’s new found relevance in times where everything is at once accessible, but distant,” he says.

“Art becomes interesting for me when it stops affirming meaning or a certain position and instead raises questions.”

The exhibition, which runs from Saturday (30 November) until 5 January, will be accompanied by a “meet the artist” event on Wednesday 4 December. Jo Baring, director and curator of The Ingram Collection, will be in conversation with Tomas as he discusses his life and work to date. More information

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