Tom Hunter (artist)
Tom Hunter (born 1965 in Bournemouth, UK) is a London-based artist working in photography and film. His photographs often reference and reimagine classical paintings. He studied at the London College of Printing, and was the first photographer to have a one-man show at the National Gallery, London.
Hunter has shown work internationally in exhibitions, his work is held in a number of public collections and he has had four books published. He has won various awards including an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Photographic Society.
Life and work
His work has specialised in documenting life in Hackney, depicting local issues and sensationalist news headlines with compositions borrowed from the Old Masters. For instance, his photograph of a squatter, Woman Reading a Possession Order, references Johannes Vermeer's Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window. This photograph won the Kobal Photographic Portrait Award in 1998. Of the photograph, which was shot with a large-format camera and printed in Ilfochrome process, Hunter said:
- "I just wanted to take a picture showing the dignity of squatter life – a piece of propaganda to save my neighbourhood....The great thing is, the picture got a dialogue going with the council – and we managed to save the houses.
In 2010 Hunter screened A Palace for Us, a film he made about the elderly residents of public buildings in Woodberry Down, Manor House, London. Jonathan Jones described it as a 'magical' work of contemporary art that chronicled the postwar ambition to provide housing for the working class.
He works at the Photography and the Archive Research Centre in London.
- Factory Built Homes: Holly Street Estate 1968-1998. Holly Street Public Arts Trust, 1998. ISBN 978-0953321506.
- Tom Hunter. Ostfildern, Germany: Hatje Cantz, 2003. ISBN 978-3-7757-1277-4. Edited by White Cube, texts by Michael Bracewell and Paul Shepheard, essays by Jean Wainwright.
- Tom Hunter: Living in Hell and Other Stories. Newhaven, CT: Yale University Press; London: National Gallery, 2005. ISBN 9781857093315.
- The Way Home. Ostfildern, Germany: Hatje Cantz, 2012. ISBN 978-3-7757-3456-1.
- Le Crowbar. Stockport: Here Press, 2013. ISBN 978-0-9574724-5-7. Edition of 1000 copies.
- Living in Hell and Other Stories, National Gallery, London.
- Tableaux Vivants, Kunsthalle, Vienna.
- Composure, Susan Hobbs Gallery, Toronto.
- Parallax, Sandronirey Gallery, California.
- 2007: group exhibition of work about the London borough of Hackney by eight artists.
- 1998: Kobal Photographic Portrait Award for Woman Reading a Possession Order.
- 2004: John Kobal Photographic Book Award 2003 for Tom Hunter.
- 2010: Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Photographic Society.
Hunter's work is held by the following public collections:
- National Gallery, London.
- Museum of Modern Art.
- Smithsonian Institution.
- Victoria and Albert Museum.
- Moderna Museet.
- Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
- Adams, Tim (11 December 2005). "The face is familiar ...". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
- Life through a lens, Royal College of Art biography
- From High Art to High Rise: Making Modern Masterpieces, National Gallery
- Photographer Tom Hunter's best shot, The Guardian, 4 November 2009
- Tom Hunter: A Palace for Us – review, The Guardian, 9 December 2010
- Biography, University of the Ats London
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