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Hazy Suggestions of Figures: Art by Tom O'Rourke

A painting of a vague face in green and blueGreen Man 2, acrylic on canvas

Tom O’Rourke is a painter based in Ireland. Tom paints in a loose, gestural style, generally favouring abstraction, though sometimes using his style to render hazy suggestions of figures and landscapes.


An abstract painting with red forms on a blue backgroundColour of Music 3, acrylic on canvas

I love the way color factors into Tom’s body of work. The artist tends to use one major color group in each work, though there is significant variation between different works and series of works. Tom’s abstract works tend toward loose geometry and planes of saturated color – in his aptly named “abstract colour painting” series, Tom layers thick lines and rectangular forms in flat, bright color over top of each other, building a picture plane with an interesting sense of depth and layers.


A screen capture of Tom O'Rourke's art websiteThe front page of Tom's portfolio website


Tom’s “Green Man” series is especially intriguing – the deep emerald and blue hues present in this series lend a sense of intrigue to each work, which is bolstered by the sparse, bare suggestion of a face that forms the focal point of each work. The viewer’s mind is left ample opportunity to fill on the blanks.


A painting of a face in loose green brush marksGreen Man 1, acrylic on canvas

About the author

Dallas Jeffs Art Writer

Dallas Jeffs is the Editor of Artist Run Website's blog. She is a recent graduate of Emily Carr University of Art and Design, where she studied Critical and Cultural Practices. She is passionate about talking and writing about art, and sharing that interest with others. In her studio practice she is a painter, but she considers herself an art writer and educator foremost. If you like art, books and culture with a science fiction twist, check out Dallas' personal blog, HappySpaceNoises

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