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Torey Thornton’s visual practice primarily concentrates on painting, but has recently expanded to include installation and sculpture. Often uniting several genres in a single artwork, they explore medium and communication, context and interpretation, distorting the function of materials and the significance of words and language in the process. Thornton pauses presumptions and reorganizes them via visual and written language, material circumstances, or through marrying media. They do so in order to reevaluate societal pressures and restrictions, while also examining the act of art making.

Torey Thornton (b. 1990, Macon, GA) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. They graduated from Cooper Union in 2012. Their work has shown nationally and abroad, including solo exhibitions at Albright–Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Stuart Shave/Modern Art, London, UK; Shane Campbell, Chicago, IL; and Karma, New York, NY. Recent group exhibitions include: Whitney Biennial 2017, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; Living Apart Together: Recent Acquisitions from the Hammer Contemporary Collection, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; and Third Space/Shifting Conversations About Contemporary Art, Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, AL. Thornton’s work is in the permanent collection of Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, AL; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, TX; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, NC; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY; University of Chicago Booth School of Business, Chicago, IL; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY.

Artworks

Torey Thornton
What Angel Do You Look Towards When You Are Damning Your Tears, Sweet Sis, 2016
Acrylic paint, corrugated plastic, collage, wood, graphite, and nail polish on wood panel
79 x 64 inches
(201 x 162.5 cm)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
Coagulated Foundation Tucked Into Petri, Night Night (current)(bar code), 2018
Acrylic paint, spray paint, and glue on wood panel
76 x 134 inches
(193 x 340.5 cm)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
The Rest (Cabbie), 2016
Wood, plexiglass, aluminum, wire basket, galvanized steel mending plates, ceramic wooden and metal mugs and vessels
100.75 x 33.75 x 24.25 inches
(256 x 86 x 61.5 cm)
Photograph courtesy of Morán Morán

Torey Thornton
Positive Reinforcements, Which Boundaries Do We See, Does Slim Jim Sound Less Sexist Than Slim Jane, 2017
Acrylic paint, yarn, glue, and wood on wood panel
96 x 90 x 3 inches
(244 x 228.5 x 7.5 cm)
Photograph by Joshua White

Torey Thornton
Seeing Red, Almost NY (frozen follicle demonstration, A view), 2016-17
Acrylic paint on wood panel
64 x 58 x 2 inches
(162.5 x 147 x 5 cm)
Photograph by Joshua White

Torey Thornton
Creative Asphyxia, Intellectual Asphyxia, Romantic Asphyxia, 2017
Acrylic paint and spray paint on wood panel
85.5 x 96.56 x 2 inches
(217 x 245 x 5 cm)
Photograph by Joshua White

Torey Thornton
Painting, 2017
Found painted rock (Waring Ave and El Centro, LA), found painted rock (Marcy and Park Ave, NY), found painted rock (Flushing Ave and 54 Pl, NY) found painted rock (Van Wyck Expy and 106 Ave, NY), found painted rock (Etsy), found painted rock (Etsy), found painted rock (N Avenue 52 and Lincoln Ave, LA), found painted rock (Maya’s Westbeth gift, NY), found painted rock (Stanton and Norfolk, NY), and hardware on steel saw blade
104 inches diameter
(264 cm diameter)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
Jump Over The Loose Rungs, 2014
Acrylic, metallic paint, cat hair, spray paint, wood, and collage on wood panel
96 x 72 inches
(244 x 183 cm)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
Shh. Come inside. It’s so warm., 2014
Acrylic, velvet and collage on wood panel
72 x 86 inches
(183 x 218.5 cm)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
Glassed In Wet Horizon With Endless Shade, 2013
Acrylic, nail polish, construction paper, and collage on poster board mounted to wood
22 x 28 inches
(56 x 71 cm)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
Breaking Some Rules For Momma, (Theresa), 2014
Acrylic, metallic paint, wood, and collage on wood slatted panel
96 x 82 inches
(244 x 208.5 cm)
Photograph by Joshua White

Torey Thornton
Dear Clifford Rocket, Don’t You Want A Home, 2016
Acrylic paint and spray paint on wood panel
90 x 105 inches
(228.5 x 267 cm)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
Ak47, Pie, Tilted Shade And Lung, 2015
Acrylic paint, spray paint, and galvanized steel on wood panel
96 x 90 inches
(244 x 228.5 cm)
Photograph by Cooper Dodds

Torey Thornton
Untitled Political Aliens (Top Fifty U.S. Babies 2018 Gender Mashed To Make My New), 2018
Acrylic paint, sharpie, and graphite on cardboard
124 x 93.25 inches
(315 x 237 cm)
Photograph courtesy of Morán Morán