Category Archives: Tommy Taylor

Artist Spotlight: Tommy Taylor on Working in Film as a Scenic Painter

“Ya see all them pink and orange tubes inside there?  … Well, they’re explosives”

You couldn’t pay me to get up every day at 5 in the morning and drive 30 miles to a dirty warehouse for a job…or so I thought. But, that is what I have been doing for the better part of the past 6 months. Traffic at this hour is nonexistent, the intersection at Ponce and Moreland/Briarcliff -generally a hideous place to be at any hour of the day – is just a blip in the rear view mirror at 5:30 a.m.

I am beginning my third feature film as a scenic painter. Continue reading

Snap Shots From Tommy Taylor’s Opening

Tommy Taylor and Radcliffe Bailey during “Some Sort of Solitude” at whitespace.

We had a great time at the opening of “Some Sort of Solitude” by Tommy Taylor.  There was a good turnout despite the cold weather, and everyone enjoyed seeing Taylor’s new paintings. We even had a special appearance from Radcliffe Bailey! Don’t worry if you could not make Continue reading

"Some Sort of Solitude," new paintings by Tommy Taylor, opens Friday, February 24 | 7 – 10 PM

Tommy Taylor, Lost and Found, Acrylic on canvas, 36 x 32 inches
February 24 – March 31, 2012
Opening reception: Friday, February 24 | 7 PM – 10 PM 


Some Sort of Solitude, Tommy Taylor’s second solo show at whitespace gallery, demonstrates a new direction in Taylor’s work. Over the past twelve years, his paintings have been mainly abstract pieces with amoebic-like forms created from intuitive, as opposed to planned, brushstrokes. His work continues evolving, but even though it introduces figures and pop references, it still contains those amorphous, abstract elements of his previous work.
His reflection on the conflicting desires, drives, meanings, and logic that confounded him as a child showed Taylor that, while he can grasp the many layers on which that conflict plays out better, it is still just as characteristic of his adult experience as it was of his childhood. He gives expression to this by placing visual elements that are hard to understand in intentionally chaotic and confusing ways that exclude the traditional visual cues of painting, like his previous abstract work. As a result, he is thwarting any possibility of arriving at a coherent, consistent visual reading of the painting. Produced and displayed in this way, the elements compete with each other, just like the drives, histories, expectations, and accepted social norms of our daily lives.  

TommyTini: Mix & Enjoy!

The mixologists of Shaun’s restaurant in Inman Park created this lovely martini in honor of Tommy Taylor’s show. Prepare recipe to your taste with the following ingredients:

  • organic vodka
  • poached kumquats with juice
  • splash of lemon juice
  • splash of homemade elderberry syrup
  • top with lemon zest

Mix, Drink & Enjoy!

Whitespace Q+A with Tommy Taylor

Painter Tommy Taylor in a Q + A with Whitespace gallery director, Susan Bridges.

SB: When did you first realize you wanted to be an artist?

Taylor: I decided at a young age to be an artist. It really was what I always did best and defined who I was as a youth. I remember being very young and thinking how strange it was that I knew what a tiger or a lion looked like in my head, yet I could not draw one that looked lifelike…so I got a book on how to draw animals and off I was!
SB: What inspires you to paint?
Taylor: Life inspires me to paint. Pain, joy, bliss…Music is inspirational and other artists work inspire me.
SB: What famous artists have influenced your work?
Taylor: Early inspiration was Andrew Wyeth. Later Willem de Kooning, Richard Diebenkorn, Antoni Tàpies, Inka Essenhigh, TL Lange.

SB: Do you feel your academic training prepared you for a career as an artist?

Taylor: Well, I don’t know that anything really could have prepared me. I’m glad I went to college and feel I am a more rounded individual. But I think I’ve just had to learn to take the lumps and keep on going…
SB: What do you do for fun, besides paint?
Taylor: Fun? I like to see movies like everyone I suppose. I like to get crazy and sing Karaoke. But my favorite is surfing. We used to surf in NYC at Rockaway Beach in the shadow of the projects. Picked it up while traveling. I’m not very good but love it. I’m a longboarder.
SB: My favorite painting in your show is Bicycle Thief, which is your favorite and why?
Taylor: Bicycle Thief is one great painting…when I did that I knew that I’d gotten lucky or the creative gods were smiling on me. That is such a strangely beautiful piece…it has its own language. After that, A Funny Story is my favorite. More often that not, each painting comes with a certain amount of struggle. After starting three different paintings on that board and scrapping them, I did that piece with NO STRUGGLE at all. That too was a gift from above…

SB: What’s next for you?
Taylor: Next? Hopefully that show in Asia. Maybe travel to Indonesia and ride out the recession on a beach…surfin’ and painting!