“Ideas, concepts, feelings, have the peculiar ability of being able to flip into their opposites, such as reality and illusion, figure and ground, the impersonal and the transpersonal.” Says sculptor Thomas Skomski, “The basis of my work lies within this interplay. I am drawn to materials which are apart of everyday experience. Differing levels of opposites are placed back to back. Objects are both seen and seen through. There is a moment prior to conceptualization which can be easily overlooked, when knowing and not knowing exist simultaneously. This simultaneous vision proves a valuable inconvenience.”
Beneath the diversity of materials and techniques in Skomski’s sculpture, one is able to recognize a continuing investigation into the relationship that exists between opposites. This investigation began with the process of carving wooden images caught changing one into another as if in the freely mutating reality of a dream. Lasting more than ten years, this process gave way to overt experimentation on the nature of illusion. He has incorporated a wide range of materials into his work to challenge our visual and conceptual habits. They include generic glass gallon containers, water, pegboard, river rocks, expanded steel and wax, to name a few. In a recent series, for example, Skomski creates cages which pointing toward an irony which refuses any single interpretation.
Thomas Skomski was educated at the Northern Illinois University and the School of the Art Institue of Chicago. He is currently working on an outdoor commission for the Visitor’s Center at the Illinois State Capitol. During the months of August and September, he wil be installing an artwork for the Sculpture Symposium sponsored by Sculpture Chicago.