All is not what it seems at first glance, with the work of TP Hardisty. From the simple face of a masked duck, to the passing of life from this world to the next, all is not instantly apparent. It is only when you take a closer look that things begin to be revealed, but even then, not always. With a second look, you might start to see the, at first, hidden materials, that created these images, or maybe not. From plastic toy ducks to vehicle reflectors, from boxes of condoms to colourful pencils, objects that start to give you an insight into the world of TP Hardisty’s art. Only then, you realise that perhaps it will take a third, or even fourth look to see in depth the intricacies, subtleties, reflections or movements that have refused to reveal themselves in that first cursorily glance. Not all the artworks of TP Hardisty reveal their hidden details, even at the fourth attempt. Some are destined to remain hidden, teasingly, until surprising you, when either revealed by word of mouth or uncovered by chance, for incorporating phosphorescent products, allows various TP Hardisty artworks to reveal hidden images that glow in the dark, lingering, long after you have switched off the lights and gone to bed.
Like all good art, it is sometimes easy to dismiss the work as simple, or decoration perhaps because of the medium, but look beyond this and you will be rewarded with work that continues to evolve in front of you, either physically, visually, or mentally, with each and every new viewing.
It would be easy to dismiss a simple image or shape as just that, simple, but you would be so far from the truth. In each TP Hardisty artwork there hides, beneath the simplicity of the product, the essence of art: ideas, an ability to precisely use the product, and a foresight that not many people possess. So much so, that a lot of the ability and talent of TP Hardisty can remain hidden to the casual observer. They do not see past the ‘the paint’. In most cases of course there is no paint, this being replaced by everyday objects, becoming the essence of the artist’s medium. This medium then has to be used, like paint, in a way that brings out more than the sum of its parts. What at first glance, can remain hidden, is the precision of the making, the interactions of the objects, both with themselves and with outside forces, the reflections and the movements within, all of which are just some of the key elements to understanding the artist.
Most pieces are millimetre perfect assemblages, even those that appear otherwise. The way the objects interact, the way a repeated colour or mark on an object will transform into something else, into a line or another shape, which in turn goes to accentuate the overall image, these are the talents of the artist. Sometimes objects are precisely positioned to form an image, either familiar or not, sometimes the image comes from within a small part of the object, prized out by the artist to create a new image, using photography. Even the photography of TP Hardisty is as is, no Photoshop, no computer enhancement, the image remains exactly as at the moment the camera went click.
What at first glance appears simple and random, is certainly not. In most of his works the artist is totally restricted by the medium in which he has chosen to use. By following his dogma of not altering, cutting or changing the shape or colour of the medium, by using it in its true unaltered, manufactured, state, this is true art. Of course it is much easier to make an image if you manipulate the medium, if you change it from what it originally was, you can create anything by adapting it to fit. But to not change the size, the colour, or the form, to work with the deformities of a material that was never intended to be used in a work of art: that is the talent of a true artist. Imagine making a painting, when you cannot alter the colour of the paint, cannot mix it, and cannot add water, oil, or any other substance to it, to have to use it just as is straight from the tube. Not many artists spring to mind.
It is only then, that you realise that for many, the results are spectacular and wide ranging. From the obvious and popular use of a child’s toy duck, to the totally unseen and unperceivable objects that go to form the very essence of the artists work. In 'The beginning of life’ and ‘The passing from this world to the next’, once you observe these images and become aware of their conception, you will be left with a very real sensation of the hair on your arms rising up and tingling.
It is very difficult to categorize the artworks of TP Hardisty. Is it Pop Art? probably not. Modern Contemporary? in a way, of course. Accumulation? maybe, but not really. Recycling? certainly not, and as with all art that cannot be categorised, it is often scorned or overlooked by the majority, until it is brought to their attention by the few....
‘13 unforgettable pieces of artwork at Art Wynwood made from unusual objects’........ Society Perrier 2014
‘Forget oil on canvas. Buyers of contemporary art want something fresher — something like black, yellow and green rubber ducks arranged to create an outline of a person’ ....... Art Palm Beach 2014
‘I found this work genius. Creative mind of the artist can find new life for the every-day objects and make as if it being La Jaconda, but with a Duck face’........ Connisseur: London Art Fair 2014
'A big hit proved to be a bunch of rubber duckies by T P Hardisty' ....... GQ Magazine: London Art Fair 2017
TP Hardisty continues to lead, and not follow the path taken by others. With his talent of re creating and exposing the qualities of everyday objects and products, he invites us to open our eyes anew and to become more aware of what we can already see, by viewing it from a different perspective.