Toc Fetch was born in Brooklyn in 1953. He studied for a year at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), though he quickly became disillusioned with academia. He moved to Switzerland in 1973, where he spent ten years in a program to learn the principles of Nondualism.
In 1989, Fetch was diagnosed with cancer. He recalls feeling for a year that he was extremely close to death, and experiencing life as an outsider. These feelings influenced his work, and revealed to him a new perspective.
“I have been closing my eyes and spending time inside myself every day for 40 years. I have found a place inside that is a still-point where time is not. This Place inside me has grown till now I feel more it than me. In this sitting each day I do absolutely nothing, I let go of me and see what comes. On occasions very lucid sights occur whose intensity dissolves the me, and whose scale is too huge to fit into my thinking. These paintings are my best response to those experiences. They are almost accurate.
The story occurring in the space between these images is the perennial Odyssey, the hero’s journey home. The sublime experienced in the work is my true-north. The sublime requires color, now, so I paint in a careful language of tiny vectors, sculpting forms out of the loving void of space, catching and moving perception with their continuous coaxing suggestions. I track the sublime into the dark by feel alone – it is my way home”
Fluence interview (Sep/Oct 2009)