Towards the Edge of Perception

Thom Cowen


:: Artist's Statement


Thom is a painter and architect who has been painting for more than two decades. Like an archeologist, he digs through layers of color using his hands to work the paint, creating abstract landscapes that are mysterious and sensory, allowing the viewer to be part of the field of perception instead of an outside observer.

This process is very tactile and open to the influence of weather, the felt sense of coast, cloud forms and ephemeral light interacting with the spontaneity of the paint. He is most interested in the edge where perception ceases to identify the image as a landscape and the known tips into the unknown. Thom has long had a deep connection to Big Surand his work is infused with its unique power and beauty. Many of the paintings in this series were created on retreats in Big Sur.

:: About


He is represented by the Gallery at Post Ranch Inn, BigSur. His workhas been exhibited at the Monterey Museum of Art, the Pacific Grove Art Center, the Des Moines Art Center and is included in private collections throughout the United States and Europe.

Thom is a partner in visual poetry studio, an interdisciplinary art, poetry and architecture studio in Carmel, Ca. Thom studied art with Jay Defeo at U.C. Berkeley and Hans Breder at University of Iowa. He has a master of architecture degree from U.C. Berkeley and has been a visiting professor at U.C. Berkeley in architecture and at the University of Iowa in art. In his architectural practice with partner Meredith Stricker, he has created some of the most unique and enduring houses built in Big Sur in recent years.