Thom Roberts has a fascination and deep personal connection with trains. He sees them as having their own personalities and characters; they are his friends.
Thom Roberts’ painting practice is one part of his varied oeuvre: a keen collaborator Thom has also worked in performance, video animation, installation, and design. Thom is a skilled draftsman, able to quickly translate landscapes and portraits in a traditional and representational style. Yet, Thom’s primary interest is in his installation practice.
In 2013 Thom was awarded an Amplify emerging artists grant. 2014 saw the beginning of a collaborative project with artist, Harriet Body called ‘Thom and Angelmouse’. In 2015 Thom and Angelmouse were exhibiting artists in the Underbelly Arts Festival on Cockatoo Island. In 2016 they contributed to an exhibition of contemporary art for children at Hazelhurst Regional Gallery, and in 2017 created a new work for Big Anxiety, a city-wide festival examining art and mental health.
In 2016/17 Thom was a collaborating artist on the birdfoxmonster project with Erth Visual and Physical Inc, supported by Carriageworks, and in 2017 he exhibited at Cementa Festival in Kandos. In 2018, Thom’s Archibald entry portrait of well known Australian architect Phillip Cox, was selected to be displayed in the Salon de Refuses, SH Irwin, Observatory Hill.
In 2018 Thom was also one of 70 artists chosen for The National: New Australian Art 2019 at Carriageworks, Eveleigh. For this exhibition Thom created a series of 16 paintings titled ‘Thom Roberts Counts Trains’.
Most recently Thom’s work has been selected by the City of Sydney as part of a larger Studio A collaboration for their site works hoarding commission. In September 2019 Thom travelled to Cesana, Italy for a week long residency at Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio under the mentorship of SRS Director Chiara Guidi and Scott Wright Artistic Director of Erth Visual and Physical Inc.
Awards, Prizes and Grants
2019 Cultural Copyright Ignite Award Recipient to undertake a residency at Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio (SRS) in Cesana, Italy.
2018 Selected for The National 2019: New Australian Art, Carriageworks Selected for the Salon des Refusés, S.H.Ervin Gallery, The Rocks
2016 Recipient of the Westpac Diversity and Inclusion commission Recipient of Blooming Arts Award: Judges Choice Award, Inner West Council
2014 ArtsNSW Artist Support Grant (Thom and Angelmouse)
2013 Amplify award for emerging artists
Residencies and Collaborations
2019 Artist in Residence at Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio (SRS) in Cesana, Italy.
2014 – 2018 Collaboration with artist, Harriet Body: Thom and Angelmouse
2018 Collaboration with One Another, ethical homewares design company
2017 Artist in Residence for Birdfoxmonster, Carriageworks, Sydney / Artist in Residence for Birdfoxmonster, Bundanon Trust, Bundanon / Artist in Residence for Birdfoxmonster, Mud Australia, Newtown
2016 Hazelhurst Regional Gallery artist in residence (Thom and Angelmouse) / Bundanon Artist Residency, Bundanon / Carriageworks ‘In Development’ for Bird Fox Monster
2011 Artist in Residence at The Paper Mill, Sydney
Selected Group Exhibitions
2019 The National: New Australian Art 2019, Carriageworks, Sydney
2018 Spilt Milk Festival, Commonwealth Park, Canberra / Salon des Refuses, S.H. Ervin Gallery, Millers Point / Paired, Firstdraft, Woolloomooloo / Suburbia, Cement Fondu, Paddington / Fbi Art Auction, National Art School, Darlinghurst
2017 birdfoxmonster, Carriageworks, Eveleigh / Sydney Contemporary art fair, Carriageworks, Eveleigh / The Big Anxiety festival, Customs House, Circular Quay (Thom and Angelmouse) / Cementa Arts Festival, Kandos / Phoenix Serenade, Art Month Art Bar, Redfern/Chippendale Precinct, Cake Wines, Eveleigh (The Props Collective)
2016 Westpac Diversity and Inclusion Strategy exhibition, Barangaroo / birdfoxmonster, Carriageworks, Sydney / Wonder: Contemporary Art For Children, Hazelhurst Regional Gallery, Gymea (Thom and Angelmouse) / Studio A: Flying High, SCA Galleries
2015 Underbelly Arts Festival, Cockatoo Island, Sydney (Thom and Angelmouse)
2014/15 Renegades, national touring exhibition, curated by Camille Masson-Talasier and Ingrid Hoffman
2013 Paper to Puppetry, GAFFA gallery, Sydney Queens, Screens and Cone Heads, Koskela, Sydney
2011 Four x Four, The Papermill, Sydney
2018 Live drawing as a guest artist at Spilt Milk, Canberra / Live drawing Bird Love Colour Wheel at the North Sydney Children’s Festival
2017 Invited speaker, Arts Activated: Pathways to Practice, conference for Disability Arts sector (Thom and Angelmouse)
The National: New Australian Art 2019