The Contemporary Art Society is pleased to share the recent acquisition of Untitled (2015) and Chair (2015) by Hayley Tompkins (b.1971) for Touchstones Rochdale. These two works are key examples of the artist’s practice, in which painting plays a pivotal role.
Whilst Tompkins makes colourful abstract works using the traditional medium of watercolour on paper, she also applies her distinctive palette of muted greens, ochre tones and bright sherbets to a wide array of everyday, found objects such as hammers, bottles, knives, chairs, twigs, mobile phones and fragments of clothing. All of these materials are carefully worked on to amplify their particular qualities and suggest new possibilities and identities.
The acquisition of Untitled (2015) and Chair (2013) will enable Touchstones Rochdale to draw meaningful links to other sculptural artworks in their collection that explore the use of found materials, colour and form. These include works by Claire Barclay, Rosa Nguyen and Natasha Daintry that were also recently acquired for the collection through the Contemporary Art Society. In a broad sense the work continues to build upon the art gallery’s history of collecting women artists and adds to this strength within the collection. The acquisition supports Touchstone Rochdale’s ongoing programme of using contemporary art to newly contextualise and reinvigorate elements of their social history collection, reflecting Tompkins personal interest in creating the possibility of new meaning through her practice.
Hayley Tompkins was born in Bedfordshire and is based in Glasgow. Her work has featured in British Art Show 8 and other past projects include solo exhibitions at Drawing Room, Hamburg (2015), Aspen Art Museum, Aspen (2013) and Inverleith House, Edinburgh (2009).