Johan Thom was born in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1976. He is currently living and working in Pretoria as a visual artist and a Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at the Department of Visual Art, University of Pretoria.Thom works across a variety of media including sculpture; video; performance; drawing; printmaking and photography.
From a broader focus on the body in his earlier work Thom’s interest have gradually shifted to a more specific exploration of the material relationship between the body and found objects. For example in ‘The Animal Series’ (2013) Thom explores his body’s relationship to an African elephant skull. In other artworks he engages with pencils, fishing gut, soil, gold, broken glass and oil amongst others. More recently Thom created a series of sculptural works in builders foam drawn from a cast of a 19th century French ceramic of Faustus and exhibited as a solo exhibition ‘The devil made me do it’ at the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg 2015.
Solo exhibitions include The Goodman Gallery (2015), Nirox Project space (2014), Iwalewa Haus (2010), the Johannesburg Art Gallery (2008) and the Bag Factory (2008), amongst others. His works have also been included in group exhibitions at the Venice Biennale (2003), the Canary Islands Biennale (2006), and at the Palazzo delle Papesse (2008). He is an active presence in the art research community and has participated in conferences and workshops at the University of Pretoria (2013/14 & 15) Documenta 13 (2012), the University of Cambridge (2009), GradCam in Dublin (2010), the Finnish Academy of Fine Art (2010), the Slade School of Fine Art (2010, 2011, 2012), ‘Real Presence’ at the Venice Biennale (2005), the University of Bayreuth (2010) and elsewhere.
In 2014 Thom completed a PhD in Fine Art at the Slade School of Fine Art (UCL) on a Commonwealth scholarship.
(For a more detailed listing of his bio, please click on the ‘Shortened CV’ link or follow the sub-pages below).
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