Transcend: A Unit London Memorial Exhibit to British Artist Tom French

unti london tom french transcend memorial exhibit

On Christmas day 2019, at the young age of 37, British painter Tom French lost his battle with cancer and the art world mourned.

british painter tom french
Tom French

An incredible talent with a distinct vision, Tom French’s work embodies the very best of art. His pieces are beautiful, yet also thought-provoking, reminding us that “art for art’s sake” doesn’t explain the depths that art can take us.

Artist Interview with Tom French

The Exhibit

Unit London, a chic art gallery located in London’s Mayfair district, had the honor of representing Tom’s work in a joint mission to present art to the public that is beautiful, open, and real. It is with a heavy heart for Tom’s passing, but also with a reverence for Tom’s craft and humanity, that they present Transcend, an exhibition to memorialize the artist and the man. Viewers will have a unique opportunity to experience and remember Tom through both his Dualities and Parallax series, which will run throughout the month of February.

Tom French ‘Transcend’ Exhibit at Unit London, 2020
Photo by Lucy Emms
black velvet chaise with a pleated and curved back - millicent chaise by koket

Tom French: The Artist & The Visionary

Tom French at work

While a talented painter, Tom was also a visionary. His work marries the abstract with photorealism and at the same time shows them to be distinct entities. This was representative of Tom’s view of the relationship between the mind and the body—separate entities that must also cohabitate. This tension between the transcendent and the tangible elements of our makeup is represented by abstract brushstrokes against hyper-realistic charcoal drawings. For many of Tom’s pieces, these contrasting elements come together to form a broader image.

The Dualities & Parallax Series

Dualities 8 by Tom Trench, 2019
Oil on Italian cotton canvas, 200 x 200 cm

Dualities is a series of faces, symbolic of the complexity of human nature. These images indirectly impart the wisdom that what we perceive may only be fragments of the truth, which seems to be intuitively pointing toward a transcendent reality that exists beyond our comprehension.

It is in this very way that powerful art points to something greater than itself. It transcends the material world and brings us into consciousness with the spiritual realm. In a sense, great art prepares us for death by forcing us to confront a reality greater than what is visible. We become acutely aware that there are elements beyond our reasoning that have the ability to move us profoundly. These forces that transcend the mind and body sometimes can only be experienced through art—through an expression of the soul.

Tom French Parallax studio group
Parallax series by Tom French in his studio

Tom’s work, if truly a window to his soul, shows that something very beautiful surrounds us. Beauty encapsulates the chaos and it’s through Tom’s paintings that we are able to cross over and experience it.

Visit Tom French: Transcend
January 30 – February 29, 2020
Unit London 3 Hanover Square London W1S 1HD

Call for Donations

tom french call for donations

Tom was taken from this world quickly and prematurely and, as a result, some practical preparations were simply impossible to make. If you would like to help support Tom’s Family please visit the link below to make a donation. Thank you for your support and we hope you can visit the exhibition.


Words by Alexa Jennelle