Further art discussions and notifications for the artwork of Sam Thorp

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


notes from the culture war...

The highest form of "ART" is indeed Martial Art.... the art of living and the ablitiy to protect that life.
One must stand up for ones-self. One must be able to live free enough to create.
Be brave enough to be creative. One must be strong enough to protect the vulnerability and sensitivity that is necessary to be an artist.
And at times... one must hurt without cruelty, those who would try to take that away from you.
It's not about punching and kicking (but be prepared to take it that far)...
it's about thinking.
One mind .. any weapon.

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Sunday, July 22, 2012


Let the record play...

I find work like this often needs explanation.
Although people are certainly free decide what they think of it on thier own without me, or in spite of what I may say; I occasionally want to reaffirm that there is a thought process happening here. 

Define the problem: Paint on a record.
Art school teaches that circular compostions are the most difficult. Ideally there is no top or bottom. So it should rotate; and that keeps well with it being a record... that spins. 
So what can one do on a circular space? Espcially when the artist has been trained to create on rectangular canvases? Abstract, all over painitng, like Pollock? Or a  geometric pattern like the Arab mosques?
There is the practical problems of anticipating how it will be hung or displayed. Records can be hung on the wall, but often we are used to seeing them flat, below eye- level.
Also consider the meaning of a circle. The circle is sacred, there is no ending no beginning; it is infinite. The never ending cycle in nature, both macro and micro- cosims. 

It will also be seen as a LP record. A long- playing 33rpm musical record. Something of a past relic, and appreciated by only a select few DJ's and collectors. A fragile instrument of the past, but still to be respected since it helped to create the modern culture where music permeates every minute of our 24 hours. 
The ridges of the record emphasize the macro & micro cycles. And the practical problem of the center sticker implying a bulls-eye to deal with. 

So with that all in mind... what do I have to say on a record? What can I do within these limitations in a way that emphasizes my strengths (figures)?

Well... I suppose.. I can do this:

Realize the nudity and sexual content is just an attention getting device. There's actually something much... deeper (ahem), going on here. 
First of all it IS a circular composition. It is meant to be hung by existing center hole. (ahem) There is no top or bottom. It looks just as strong from any rotation. I signed it on the back so as not to influence the orientation. But other than the signature I kept the back as unmarked as I could. Out of reverence. I wanted people to know what record was used/lost in the making of this new piece. 
I used the center sticker as a proportion guide to create a "Flower of Life" pattern engraved into the white primer. The pattern is grooved in on top of the existing grooves. Creating a harmony of macro & micro.
The figures are posed in a circle on the bullseye circle. Again they have no (ahem) top or bottom and it can be viewed no matter the rotation. It fits with the Flower of Life Pattern because it is very common to use flower metaphors when describing women and espcially female sex organs (Thank you Georgia O'Keefe and Judy Chicago). 
The circle may be sacred, the Flower of Life is sacred, but so is sex.
Taoism teaches that sex is one of the most sacred things in existance. Here we have two women, similar but distinctly different fitting together nicely; like Yin and Yang. (Oh, and let me point out that Taoism does not condemn homosexuality, they're quite cool with it.) 
But we do have a lesbian theme, and not just because I'm the one painting it. The Flower of Life can be seen as a web that creates a variety of geometric shapes and patterns, a web of connectivity. The sacred geometry in the Flower of Life created the Tree of Life in Jewish Kabbalah. A structure of infinte relationships connecting the many. 
What does that sound like ? The Lesbian chart. The Chart. The web of interconnectivity and the various shapes those relationships take.

So... in conclusion... the hot lesbian sex is just a Trojan horse of titliation to a Mandala of sacred contemplation and interconnectivity.


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Saturday, July 21, 2012


Things to come

-The Common Wealth show will be winding down soon at the GLCC. This is your last chance to see it, or see it again... maybe even buy something. And then the artists will need to come and pick up unsold work. The gallery will take a break for some re- painting. The next show will be In October with Leah Bevilacqua and some International Queers: Gemma Allan, Jon Howe and Giulia Parisi. Save the date.

-I will be taking part in the Steel City Derby Demons Black Eye Affair. Come out to the Rocking Horse Saturday Aug 25th. Bid on my work.  More info can be found here:

- I'll have some new work at Artform in Lower Burrell July 28th. I've been working on a way to transfer my drawings more accurately to the painting surface. These new watercolors are an experiment.

-AAAaand of course i have art for sale on ebay. Get a bargain to fill out your collection:

Sunday, July 08, 2012



to figurative work.
When drawing/ painting/ photographing the human figure there are a few routes you can take:
1. Microcosim- microscopic imagery of the body's interior
2. Gaze- the face with its seeing eye.
3. Flesh- Naked vs. Nude
4. Memory- Labyrinth of the mind
5. Icon- idealised perfection
6. Gesture- language of the body; movement & energy
7. Desire- sensuality & eroticism
8. Form- tradition of the nude; geometric form
9. Pain- suffering
10. politics- the body's values & meanings
11. Enquiry- domain of scientific investigation
12. Fiction- imagination, dream & fantasy
13. Macrocosim- single person in relation to the universe.

14. ? ... did I miss anything?

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