Thomas Bunce
Works on Paper

In Thomas Bunce’s graphic works, fairytale elements belie formal compositions in which the eclectic range of visual information at play is anything but childlike. Bunce appropriates Disneyesque castles, towers, and swashbuckling caricatures. He also sources from classic manga, like Yuichi Kumakura’s Jing: King of Bandits. Yet within a single ‘frame’, Bunce’s drawings map out multiple perspectives, and subsequent ‘frames’ or compositions dissect recognizable, initial forms. Thus, the conventional ‘comic strip’ becomes curiously layered and unfamiliar, acquiring architectural qualities through a technical process that calls to mind the repeated revisions of site plans for an unfinished building.

Bunce’s ‘dissections’ stem from his stated interest in countering the oversimplified images typical of most children’s books. They are also influenced by his childhood affinity for the 'Incredible Cross-Sections' of English illustrator Stephen Biesty. Bunce’s most recent work—a series of object-riddled and color-saturated gouaches—includes graphic representations that evoke Biesty’s illustrations with their cutaway panoramas and inside-out views. Still, what one might term the ‘pictorial splicing’ characteristic of Bunce’s paintings produces a highly contemporary, digital effect: the sense that a web of references exists just beyond the dimensions of the screen or page at hand.

[Anna Moser, July 2012.]

Bunce, Thomas
The Cat with a Bright Cap
Acryl with small individual drawings pasted on.

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Bunce, Thomas
Untitled.
Pen and ink with pencil.

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Bunce, Thomas
Untitled
Pencil.

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Bunce, Thomas
Climbing the Tower
Pen and ink with pencil.

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Bunce, Thomas
Untitled
Pen and ink with pencil.

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Bunce, Thomas
Untitled
Pen and ink with pencil.

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Bunce, Thomas
Untitled
Pen and ink.

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Bunce, Thomas
Untitled
Pencil.

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