Thomas Harden sees his art practice as an autobiographical exploration of his life, drawing on childhood memories of his family and friends and his moves throughout California and Texas.
Thomas is often inspired by pop culture, wrestling and his love of country music, saying “I was on YouTube and saw a music video of Kelsea Ballerini driving a pickup truck. I decided that I wanted to make her out of clay.” Thomas likes how he can make whatever he likes out of clay, saying it’s an easy and fun material to work with.
Keeping memories alive is part of what drives Thomas to create art. Kobe Bryant is someone that he looked up to as a child. When Bryant passed away on January 26 2020, Thomas made memorial drawings to honor him. Thomas also feels that art making is a great way to meet people, saying “I like to come to NIAD to make new friends.”
// Thomas’s available work //
recent exhibition history
Art of the African Diaspora // Richmond Art Center // January – March 2022
Every Sing, organized by Jesse Malmed // NIAD Art Center // July 2021
Turn To Stone, organized by Em Kettner // NIAD Art Center // August 2019