“Exploring where the natural and manufactured worlds collide” – Hastings Exhibition


Hastings Contemporary presents a major exhibition of the work of Caragh Thuring (born in Brussels in 1972) – her first exhibition in the UK in six years. It runs until March 12.

Caragh Thuring by Doug Inglish

Liz Gilmore, Director of Hastings Contemporary, said: “The exhibition of over 20 works will include paintings, drawings and monotypes created over the past 15 years. All works are on loan from the artist and UK public and private collections, to avoid the environmental impact of international shipping.

“Thuring’s unique compositions oscillate between the humorous and the everyday, juxtaposing the signs and images of his recurring iconography of volcanoes, bricks, submarines, tartan, human figures and flora and exploring where the worlds natural and manufactured collide.

“Thuring grew up in Scotland near Holy Loch, the site of America’s famous Cold War nuclear submarine base and also the construction site for the first concrete oil rigs in the North Sea. This clash of nature and industry continued throughout his practice with looming underwater silhouettes, vast industrial structures and landscapes appearing frequently across different series. Likewise, Thuringia incorporates a recurring brick motif into her work, which for her perfectly represents the natural and the made in a single object.

“Thuring is curious to know what lurks out of sight. Volcanoes and submarines lurk below, surfacing intermittently. The brick walls obstruct our view and the untreated or woven canvas draws our attention to the painting surface itself and what might lie beyond. What is not obscured is often fragmented, disrupting the viewer’s familiarity with what they are looking at.

“For recent works, Thuring commissioned bespoke fabrics from Suffolk silk weavers to use as canvas. Digital renderings of previous paintings, photographs she has taken or found images are woven on a loom, sewn together and stretched before being painted.

“Thuring’s fascination with boundary lines and liminal spaces is perfectly reflected in the gallery’s position on the foreshore, surrounded by the town’s historic beach, net shacks and fleet work structures. sin. Massacre of the Innocents (after Breughel), 2010, seems to echo the imposing local architecture of the fishermen’s huts on the beach of Hastings while the maritime and landscape language permeates the work.

“Thuring says she looks forward to the unprecedented experience of seeing her works created at different points in her career, together for the first time.”

Liz added: ‘Hastings Contemporary aims to champion the best in contemporary art, particularly painting, so the work of important mid-career artist Caragh Thuring is a perfect fit for our tenth anniversary. Thuring’s work is fluid, intuitive, instinctive. The constancy of his production is extraordinary. Thuring has explored and taken up many motifs over the years, often in response to geography/location and nature, including human nature. Volcanoes and their geological structures, nuclear submarines and landscapes, the clash of the natural and the manufactured, an exhibition of this nature, in our eco-friendly beachfront gallery, consuming all of our ground floor galleries will have a dramatic impact but also a strong resonance in Hastings and even nationally.

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