Graphic artist, author and educator Patrick Thomas has lived in Berlin since 2011. “My studio is in Neukölln in south east Berlin, home to large Turkish, Arabic and Kurdish communities,” Patrick Thomas tells It’s Nice That. “It is inevitably compared to London’s East End, where I lived in the mid 80s as a student. Eduardo Paolozzi, pioneer of British Pop art, had a studio nearby in the late 80s. With the neighbourhood’s bustling cultural diversity, I can see what attracted him to the area.”
Lately, Patrick has been using his Instagram page to explore an ever-shifting visual facet of the city around him. “Anyone who has visited Berlin will remember the proliferation of posters. They are an integral, ever-changing part of the cityscape, giving oxygen to the streets,” he says. By looking at the letterforms which populate those posters, Patrick encourages us to linger over details which may go unnoticed in the rush of daily life.
“Very simply, since moving to Berlin five years ago I have started walking a lot more,” Patrick explains of the project. “Logically, slowing things down permits you to observe details that you might otherwise miss on a bike or a bus, and posters — like a city’s DNA — deserve closer scrutiny. Instagram seems to be the perfect way to share this material.”
And as for other projects, the never-not-working artist tells us, “I’m currently preparing my second solo exhibition this year that opens in March in southern Germany, and starting to plan a big exhibition in Berlin that will take place in 2018. Paul Davis is in town next month screen printing at my studio, and further ahead I’m planning a collaboration with Anthony Burrill and Eike König, again at my studio. Apart from that, my third book is in the pipeline, and my hugely talented class at Stuttgart State Academy of Art is keeping me busy…”