Lives and works in Melbourne
18 November — 21 November 2020
Weekender is a small exhibition of paintings that speak of hope. Created during lockdown by Melbourne artist Tom Adair, Weekender reminds us of the joy of living in this country. From the beach and the rock pools to the riverbanks of the interior, our relationship to water is intrinsic and it is egalitarian. It informs our interactions—how we relax with friends and family and connect with the natural world. On a weekend you will find us swimming and dreaming in, or next to, the water.
Adair’s ‘chromatones’ methodology creates a feeling of familiarity for the viewer without literal precision—allowing us to engage with the work on multiple levels and bring our own experiences to the fore. Technically—in many respects, this is contemporary pointillism and, like the Impressionists, Adair is utilising the optics of his technique to bring a sense of life and light to the composition. In doing so, he creates a thoroughly Australian sensibility to his work.
Painting from a place of lockdown where you question the validity (even if innocent) for leaving your house and ensuring to stay within a 5km radius from home, at all times has been surreal. Social suffocation is real—not even being allowed to see your closest family or friends made Melbourne even darker and gloomier than usual.
One hour of permitted exercise per day, no business, and eerily deserted roads induced a longing to escape Melbourne’s winter more than ever. With international or even interstate travel off the cards, we fantasised about what normality looked like outside our free-range prison.
Weekender, for me, became an escape from the twisted reality; a real-life ground hog day. Limited from my practice and regular process of even photography, I purchased a camera and sent it to friends in places that had the freedom to live. Through technology, I directed and collaborated with them to experience, vicariously, their release from the asphyxiation of imposed restrictions.
Painting the works in Weekender was like a holiday everyday—bright colours instilled positivity and a reason to want to get to work and paint a brighter future for myself.
\ Exhibition featured works
16 November 2020
Weekender by Melbourne artist Tom Adair was featured on the cover of the Good Weekend's 52 Weekends Away issue in the SMH and The Age, 14–15 November.
"Weekender" is part of a new series of works by the artist. The paintings will be on show in the N\H Project Space from 18-21 November.