Thomas Zimmerman


 "Exploring the Third Dimension"

Architecture, considered by many to be the mother of the visual arts, is, by nature a physical realization of multiple, complex forces. Constrained by the realities of physical site, economics, programme, social and cultural precepts, technology, politics and ego, an architectural creation is a marvelous and magical thing.

I broke free of these constraints in a medium which I find allows joyous exploration of the relationships between form, space, light and shadow, dimension, colour and perspective. The virtual world of the computer is as creatively challenging as it is liberating.

The artist is provided tools to create and manipulate sculptural elements in three dimensional space on a two dimensional surface. As a powerful contemporary creative tool, the computer provides the brush, the paint, the palette and the canvas.  Line and shape can have form, depth and dimension, and colour can have light and shadow. Linear objects can penetrate mass in unlimited space.

I created this series of images from two dimensional architectural plans developed a decade ago. The computer and its sophisticated 3D capabilities was subsequently used to meticulously evolve a simple graphic plan into a dynamic, expressive sculptural construction. After creating multiple light sources or 'suns' of different tonality, angle and azimuth, I designed a surreal world of layered, penetrating volumes in light and shadow.

All aspects and qualities of each image have been conceived, developed and controlled by me.  Nothing is random.

The final compositions are subjective. Informed by my vision and experience as an architect, they are metaphors for architectural and urban structures. A subconscious, automatic, visceral resolution of visual relationships in a conscious and deliberate process of discovery.

-Thomas Zimmerman

Biography
Thomas began drawing at an early age (before he was 2, according to his mother, a teacher who studied at the OCA under A.Y. Jackson).  He has maintained a profound interest in the visual arts throughout his life, studying art at the University of Saskatchewan under Ted Godwin, and then, during his studies in Architecture at the Universities of Manitoba, Winnipeg and Carleton, Ottawa.  After graduating from Architecture, Thomas studied color theory, graphics and sculpture at the Emily College of Art and Design in Vancouver.

Thomas specializes in Architectural Design and has worked for several of Vancouver's leading Architects including Arthur Erickson, Bing Thom and Architectura. A registered Architect maintaining his own Architectural practice since 1993, Thomas has been involved with numerous residential, commercial, recreational and institutional projects. As a student with Arthur Erickson in the mid 1970's, Thomas was responsible for drawing many of the plans and sections for the book 'The Architecture of Arthur Erickson', first published in 1975.

Thomas has developed this 'fine art' chapter in his life after becoming inspired by a graphic plan diagram of a home he wished to design and build for himself in West Vancouver in 1991. In 2004, he married this diagram to a developing interest in creating 3D models of some of his projects as part of his architectural practice. With a powerful computer, a sophisticated CAD program and a passion for self expression, Thomas began creating multi-layered coloured forms in virtual space. He then manipulated these elements in layered space to create constructions of highly expressive imagery.

Residing in Ambleside, Thomas moved from Vancouver to West Vancouver in 1989.

B.E.S. (Design), B.Arch.,  MAIBC
Education
Bachelor of Architecture, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario
Bachelor of Environmental Studies ( Design ), University of Manitoba
University of Saskatchewan (Arts and Sciences), Regina
Emily Carr College of Art and Design, Vancouver, B.C.
Exhibitions
2010     West Vancouver Harmony Arts Festival Juried Group Show
2005     West Vancouver Memorial Library Juried Group Show
1982     Cameo Gallery, Vancouver, Annual Spring Show as a member of the ECCAD group under Echo Printermakers
Affiliations
1992 - Present     Member, The Architectural Institute of British Columbia
1980 - Present     Member, The Vancouver Art Gallery
2001, 1992 - 1995     Member, The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada
1994 - 1997     Intern Architect Mentor Program, A.I.B.C.  
1994 - 1995     The Vancouver Board of Trade
1993 - 1994     The American Institute of Architects
1993     Ecodesign Resource Society
1993     World Future Society
1991 - 1993     The Canadian Craft Museum  
1985     The Far East Society of Architects and Engineers
1982     UBC School of Architecture Thesis Review Committee