Austin Thomas’s delicate constructions; in sketchbooks, in wood or steel, on old book pages, in photographs and with ink and collage, have an immediate and ineffable charge, the kind that makes you take a step back and reconsider what you’re looking at. Most of her pieces are modest, humble in materials and self-effacing in effect. This modesty puts all the weight on the moment of viewing.
Thomas’s art encourages us to address the “thing in itself.” Her work engenders a spiritual uplift. Shaped, forged, fabricated, scribbled upon, or drawn over, Thomas facilitates so many marks, suggesting a subtler world, rich with nuance and precision, with enough room to insert our own narratives or borrow one from the nearest library. The generosity of her ascetic sensibility is stunning and points to a future where hope might reside.