TELL ME MORE | Artist Interview: Will Thomson

Kooness - 26 Feb 2018

Art magazine - art news - TELL ME MORE | Artist Interview: Will Thomson

Will Thomson is an emerging British artist, born in 1992, he lives and works in London.

Will Thomson's work deals with memory and it's fallibility.

His works draw on the Freudian concept of the uncanny, where normal, everyday objects are seen in a different light and become unfamiliar and strange.

He is represented by MTArt Agency, London.




1. How old are you and where do you come from?

I'm 25 and from London.


2. Do your origins influence your artistic vision?

I'm still very close to where I grew up and my studio is at the bottom of the childhood house I grew up in, so it would be very hard to avoid referencing my time there.
If anything it has completely shaped my work. I love the strange feeling you get when you visit a space in which you used to live, you have this connection that you hold entirely in your memory.
But now that space isn't yours, and this powerful nostalgia kicks in, you remember small forgotten details, which ironically, once made you feel at home, but now make you feel uncomfortable.
It's almost like smelling your ex's perfume on someone else.
I think after enough time, remembering the spaces you have left can be as powerful as remembering the people you have lost - which is fascinating. 


3. What does it mean for you to be an artist?

I don't really know, I don't really think of my self as "an artist" or "Will Thomson - the artist" and that's not because I'm not confident, as far as I'm concerned I'm just me being me.
I have worked hard over the past 6 years to enable myself to practise art - I know that.
It's what I want to spend pretty much all my time doing - I know that.
I guess by default that makes me an artist but I don't want to be associated with the bunch of people I have met over the past 2/3years that declare themselves as artists,  as if that's a reason for me to take them more seriously or because they think its impressive (I know you're there for the free booze and the photo op)
I think being an artist is a struggle, and if you are not battling with your work, then your not making good art, you are fakin' it 'till you make it. 



4. What are the artistic and cultural references that influence you?

I try to keep a lid on the art that influences me, otherwise, I'll end up copying - I love Mona Hatoum, I think she is a genius - that's as far as I'll go. 


5. What is inspiration for you?

It can be anything and everything, it depends on my mood and attitude to making work. I love satisfaction, so anything that is remotely satisfying inspires me. It could be remembering a forgotten memory, it could be how two colours work with each other, it could be how two materials contrast but look like a match made in heaven. if there's some irony in there too, some humour, then you have baked a good cake. 

I love the idea of painting smaller feelings that last a very short period of time, like the moment you walk in from the cold and the warm air touches your face.
Or in summer when you sleep on top of the covers with the window open and the breeze nourishes you and sends you to sleep. If I can capture the essence these small day to day moments in a painting, then I'll like it. 


6. What do you think about the contemporary art system?

I don't know a huge amount about it other than it seems to be struggling?
I think it would be nice if more people invested in artists at an early stage and offered support when it's needed.
I'm very lucky to be with MTArt who have supported me for a while now, they have funded my first solo exhibition which I am very excited about. 
Coming up in March from the 12th to the 17th - UNIT 3, Old Street Underground Station. 




7. Do you think social media and online platforms are a useful way to spread your works? 

Yeah definitely, they need to be taken advantage of.
Its free and there is a lot of potential access. 


8. Future projects?

I want to exhibit as much as possible, be ambitious and not cast ideas aside because I don't think I'll be able to make them or afford to make them. 

I want to make an entire gallery room into my childhood garden, fill it with smells and sights familiar to everyone, and hopefully encourage people to remember a childhood memory they may have forgotten for a while.
Maybe even get my young cousins involved to play football on it as a performance piece. "Just Like I Did".


The works of Will Thomson are available for sale online on Kooness.




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