The richly detailed, often shimmering surfaces of Tomas Vu’s new paintings are palimpsests of paint, drawing and doodle. Vu’s paintings are mineral-rich, swampy, overgrown environments where vegetal creatures, trees and vines sprawl across the canvas. Figurative passages invested with dynamic color appear unexpectedly, almost like hyper-realized cartoons of the real world outside the painting, picturing actors or events.
In contrast to their rich details and elaborate contents, these paintings possess a great deal of open space. The compositions are decentered; a lot of their activity is thrown off to the periphery. As a consequence, the works seem free, open to interpretation, wide and cosmological.