Search the whole artnet database

  Magazine Home  |  News  |  Features  |  Reviews  |  Books  |  People  |  Horoscope  

Thomas Burke
The Hots

Tainted Love

I Want You to Want Me

Re-Animator Deluxe
by Eve Wood

Thomas Burke, Nov. 8-Dec. 27, 2003, at Western Project, 3830 Main Street, Culver City, Ca. 90232

Las Vegas artist Thomas Burke makes large, arduously painted acrylic-on-metal op-art canvases, which seethe like a veritable hothouse of color. Burke is a 3D abstractionist -- that is, he begins with a flashy and colorful grid-based design -- something akin to a cross between Tetris, the building-block video game, and a Navajo blanket -- and makes it appear to heave and swell. The works are done with grace and style, and impress with their supreme craftsmanship.

In Tainted Love, an epic 24 in. x 120 in. painting that is named after a song by the 1980s art-rock band Soft Cell, the brightly hued labyrinth of shapes seems to undulate and buck. Similarly, I Want You to Want Me, its title taken from a Cheap Trick song, resembles a waving ream of fabric.

Aside from their rock-inspired titles, there is also a musicality to these images. The deep, sonorous reds hold within them a quiet, more deliberate vibration, whereas Burke's whites are stark and unforgiving as all great whites should be.

Burke has a adventurous attitude towards color, dimension and space. Using only flat surfaces, he still achieves a real sense of deep distance, fluid movement and elegance.

EVE WOOD is the author of the book of poetry, Love's Funeral (Cherry Grove Collections, University of Cincinnati).

artnet—The Art World Online. ©2014 Artnet Worldwide Corporation. All rights reserved. artnet® is a registered trademark of Artnet Worldwide Corporation, New York, NY, USA.