Wk 5- Artist Conversation: Joshua Thomen

Exhibition Information:

Artist: Joshua Thomen
Exhibition: STILL HERE
Media: Sculpture, Cement, Glass Figurines
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dennis W. Dutzi Gallery
Instagram: @voyezmessouvenirs



About the Artist:

This week I viewed the work of Joshua Thomen. Joshua Thomen is a third year at California State University, Long Beach. He is currently on the road to getting a Bachelor of Arts but is planning to apply to get a Bachelor of fine arts. Thomen is trying to get his BFA in the sculpting program.



Formal Analysis:

Joshua Thomen’s work was presenting in a dimly light gallery with the door closed and serine music playing to create a world for his work. Thomen works with ceramics and cement to create a different form of sculpture. The seemingly innocent figures were placed in a formation that had a wall like feeling and structure.


Content Analysis:

Thomen’s work is a nod to the United States’ government and current political change and views. The innocent figures being trapped in cement display of Thomen feeling trapped with the government and system we have currently, the innocent figures representing Thomen and the cement representing the government. The placement of the cement blocks were supposed to represent the divide and separate the gallery much like our political system and the  nation at large. This wall like formation could also be a nod to the wall that is in talks of being built by our current president.


My Experience:

I enjoyed Thomen’s work and related to his feelings of being trapped. I can relate to this both in the political aspect and in other aspects throughout my life. I also enjoyed how simplistic his work was. I feel that often in art people think that they have to be over the top to be seen as creative, or they feel they have to out do another person in order to be notice. Thomen’s work shows how there is also power in minimalism and that you don’t need to be over the top to provoke emotions. The minimalist work shows the power of art and how even the smallest of pieces can have a big impact.



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