Monday, February 7, 2022

Tom Wood / Deeply missed / The place where looking in and looking out meet

 Tom Wood is a Bellingham artist who died on January 5, 2022, at age 70.   His art has been a vital part of my life since the 1970s when he and his beloved wife, Pam Brownell, had a booth at the Point Roberts Arts and Crafts Fair where they were selling his earliest etchings and aquatints.  I bought an aquatint in which he conveyed what I understood as three views of reality, using the image of three birds with the heads of men (or maybe three men with the bodies of birds) -- one looking in, one looking out and one looking at the place where looking in and looking out meet. 

Over the years, I bought several other prints and one oil painting and even traded one of my paintings for one of his monoprints along with a tiny painting in gouache by Pam Brownell. A few years ago, under financial duress, I sold all of them except the first one I bought and Pam Brownell's gouache.

"In all his work he kept an eye toward beauty. Tom will be deeply missed ..."

"Thomas Wood’s works are included in countless collections of private individuals and in institutions such as the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University, Philadelphia Art Museum, Tacoma Art Museum, Microsoft, University of Washington Medical Center, Whatcom Museum of Art and History, Stanford University, New York Public Library, and the Museum of Northwest Art among others. Over the last decade Wood was commissioned by Nawakum Press to create a series of etchings that accompanied publications of short stories by Jorge Luis Borges and Bruno Schulz. A large-scale mural by the artist graces the Timber Park Pavilion performance stage at Boulevard Park in Bellingham, Washington. Though living with inoperable cancer for the past few years, he enjoyed making art on an almost daily basis and continued to embrace his local community of artists, transitioning his studio into a space for visiting artists to experiment with the printmaking medium he so loved."

Take a look these slides that show the murals Tom Wood painted for the Timber Park Pavilion here in Bellingham.


Coincidentally, it was on the day that Tom Wood died that I sat down at my drawing table in despair at having lost all motivation to draw and found myself prompted to pick up a 6B drawing pencil and draw my right hand with my non-dominant left hand and found to my delight that something new had entered my life as an artist.  It was only yesterday that I learned that Tom Wood had died on the 5th of January.  It doesn't seem all that long ago that I saw him in our local art supply store where we talked for a few moments about making art.

Dear blog friends, near and far, I hope you will take the time to look at some of Thomas Wood's lifetime work of prints and paintings that can be easily found with some internet searches and that you will be inspired by his art which shows an "honest and inquiring mind, a playful spirit quick to make a joke, a deep appreciation of the natural world, and an endless imagination."


The Weaver of Grass said...

I am going over to find some of his work now.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Can't find him - can you give me a bit more information please.

am said...

Hello Weaver of Grass! I'll add some links for you now.

Anonymous said...

His work is so beautiful. His face, that smile... it breaks my heart that he's gone, and I didn't even know him.

Colette said...

Stunning! Talent AND imagination.

37paddington said...

Such beautiful art he made, so atmospheric. Thank you, am for sharing him with us. I am sorry for your loss, but glad to know how he has inspired you.