ARTIST - PRESS

THORA HAMILTON
CONTEMPORARY PAINTINGS
OF MALES & FEMALES



  A powerful sensuality exudes from Thora Hamilton’s provocative paintings of males and females whose sullen eyes and parted lips are also a playful simulation of icons from the world of the beautiful, yet shot through somehow, in Thora’s creations, with something wholly elusive, far, far deeper and far more intimate.


  Hamilton’s blow-ups convey an initially urbane “glossy mag” effect but the serious side of this artist’s intent quickly follows: her paintings succeed for the mastery of their compositional form through paint as a medium, the seal of an artist who continues to paint in expressionistic manner, the human figure ultimately as universal bonder, uniting painter with viewer in whatever stylistic mode from time immemorial.

  A typical Hamilton work contrasts an immense facial image against an action-field abstract ground. Faces or figures comprise streaks of primaries and brushed-on fluorescents or blobs of undiluted hand-applied blacks, greys and whites, floodlit visages perhaps seeing nothing, really, as they stare into the camera, though pleading for no more than the mere attention of somebody .... anybody...

  Thora has a fascination for the ephemeral nature of facial expression and the unsettling way that who we are inside can be read and equally disappear again with the tiniest quiver of an eye, nose or lip muscle.

  Leonardo and Bronzino in particular were masters of the ambiguous in portraiture: what is it in a face that can captivate and hypnotise? Such charisma is now the stuff of up-front people, stars and models whose paparazzi and public beg them, as Madonna commands, to “strike a pose”.
Vanity is at play here too, an all too topical aspect of our “must-be-seen”, self-conscious world of appearances. Desire and attraction, Hamilton reflects, are forceful movers: seduction is constantly and playfully at work, between the lines of our everyday realities in which the virtual has become more real than the actual.

  Once upon a time, Helen of Troy was the face that launched a thousand ships. And now? men crying? women pouting? divas and heroes ... putas and machos ... no matter ... whatever ... all are for the taking!!!



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