The CAS helps acquire three bronze heads by sculptor Thomas J. Price for The Collection Museum and Usher Gallery, Lincoln

24 June 2021 By

The Contemporary Art Society is pleased to announce the support of a recent acquisition by London based sculptor and artist Thomas J. Price for The Collection Museum and Usher Gallery, Lincoln. Thomas J. Price works across film, photography and sculpture to explore issues of – and perceptions of – power structures and representation in society.

Price creates a dialogue with the viewer, encouraging them to analyse their behaviours and reactions to Black phenotypes, particularly in spaces where they are not historically represented. Bronze has been historically used to create sculptures that pay homage to a person’s legacy.  These sculptures can also reclaim and redefine the way Black figures are typically represented in sculpture.

Mental Structures #19 and Mental Structures #20 are from the series Mental Structure and Head 13 is from the series Head, ongoing since 2006. Price’s sculptures are created through various methods of experimentation to create an amalgamation that encompasses physiognomy, classical sculpture and individuals observed in everyday life. Mental Structure #19 (Just Beyond This) and Mental Structure #20 (A Long Time Now) were completed during a residency at the Nirox Sculpture Park, South Africa. Head 13 is one of the earlier works to be acquired; the initial sculpting process was featured in the BBC documentary, How To Get A Head In Sculpture. In these three works, the artist engages with a psychological understanding of our socially learned attitudes, as well as the impact that the media and taught behaviours have upon our perception of other people.

In line with Price’s interrogation of power and representation, The Collection and Usher Gallery also has a particular interest in collecting contemporary art that explores concepts of authorship and reproduction. This has been reflected in recent acquisitions through the Contemporary Art Society by both Alan Kane and Oliver Laric. When on display, Price’s sculptures have the opportunity to address these themes in addition to engaging with questions about society, art and race in the past and present.

Thomas J Price (b.1981, London) lives and works in London. Recent solo shows and projects include The Line, London (2020); The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto (2019); and Frieze Sculpture, London (2017). Recent group shows include ARKEN Museum of Moderne Kunst, Copenhagen (2021); Goodman Gallery, London (2020); and Somerset House, London (2019). Price is currently working on a commission for Hackney Council to honour the Windrush generation, which will be unveiled in 2022.