Beverley Thornley

Collecting earthy materials - rocks, pigments, rubble – and using them to depict places and ideas forms the bedrock of Beverley’s practice. Such ordinary stuff is ubiquitous but unique to the place where it's found. Her artistic role is to collaborate with these inanimate materials, encouraging them to express their character and energy and maybe, tell us something about their origins and history. She is inspired by the idea that inanimate matter has unacknowledged agency and wants to engage the viewer’s curiosity and interest in the ordinary, earth-derived materials that we take for granted and that can easily be ‘reduced to rubble’.

Her prints for this exhibition draw on a longstanding interest in gathering building rubble from various sites, collecting images of rubble from newspaper articles as well as the language used when talking about rubble. On first glance one lump of rubble looks much like another, but a detailed inspection reveals its unique composition, colour, and shape. It embodies not only its origins, but also time and location. Similarly, one rubbly scene in a newspaper looks much like another, but a closer examination uncovers more – the different destructive forces behind the collapse, the surviving structures, the various remnants.