Tom Palmer ( b : 1986 ) works with traditions of craftsmanship and material experimentation, fused with contemporary design , to create work spanning the spectrum of fine and decorative arts. His work includes, mirrors, furniture, objects, wall panels and screens.
Palmer’s work explores experimentations in materials and processes applied to a continued fascination with natural systems, phenomena and the ephemeral. These he attempts to capture in materials which are often profoundly unnatural and industrial in nature. He combines these elements under conditions that force them to react with one another, in order to generate often unexpected and uncontrived results; a practice that is always on the very edge of success or failure.
In a new collection of pieces, Palmer has carved sculptural vessels from blocks of rare translucent Alabaster, quarried in Italy and Spain. This extraordinary stone is carved and shaped by hand to reveal the natural translucency and veining hidden inside the raw stone, shaping it into forms that are inspired by ritual vessels found in civilisations throughout the ancient world.
There was a strong tradition of carving fine sculptures in alabaster in England throughout the Middle Ages, creating everything from small personal devotional items to huge elaborate altarpieces. Sadly this tradition largely disappeared along with most of the carving in the U.K. during the reformation, with most pieces only now surviving in continental Europe. Through these alabaster works Palmer hopes to recapture a small part of this sculptural tradition, taking this otherworldly material into a new contemporary environment.