San Francisco

Tom Holland

Hansen-Fuller Gallery

At the Hansen-Fuller Gallery we have had an impressive show of paintings in epoxy on fiberglass, and some watercolors, by Tom Holland. In the past I saw formal experiment and little else in Holland’s work, but now he is making beautiful objects whose interest goes far beyond formal titillation. Like his earlier work, these paintings, collectively entitled the Berkeley Series, offer a combination of drip painting and topology. Holland’s raised strips of fiberglass, often painted in much the same way as their background, make each piece as a whole something like sculpture.

I used to think Holland was trying to express a Dionysian sensibility with an excessively light-colored palette. Now he is using darker and more assertive colors with strong effect. My favorite pieces are Berkeley Series #105, which combines full-bodied red, blue, and gold, and #112, a riot of autumnal browns and reds. It is good to see substantial progress in a short time, and with this show Tom Holland has really hit his stride as a painter.

Jerome Tarshis