Jenny Hirst

‘Much of my work is landscape based – inspired by my travels in the UK and abroad. For this exhibition, I looked at the west coast of Cornwall and found inspiration in the ever-changing weather and its effect on the sea and the coastline – the magical light of west Cornwall. I have tried to capture in these paintings, the dramatically different moods of the water, the coastline and the skies, the casting of light and shadows on the water and the sweeping sands disappearing and re-appearing with the ebb and flow of the tide.


‘I try to incorporate interesting textures into my work by the overlaying of paint and collage, the addition of an element of drawing and also the rubbing and scraping away of paint to reveal layers beneath. I aim to capture the essence of a place – an emotional response rather than an accurate representation. Thus my paintings – which begin from a photograph, sketch or a memory – often take on a life of their own led by the medium and the method of applying the paint. It is a process of experimentation, a balance between control and letting go and taking risks. With a spontaneous style it is impossible to predict the exact outcome – I like to let the painting evolve whilst always paying attention to composition and balance of colour and form.


‘All the paintings in this exhibition began their lives in a makeshift studio in Trewellard, from where I could walk on to the coastal path in less than five minutes. The walks were meditative, allowing the hours of observation to unravel naturally day after day. I felt the earth’s history, from as far back as the bronze age, of how so many lives depended on the metals found within. The colours I used reflect this.’