Kirsty Harris (b. 1978) was raised in Yorkshire and lives and works in east London with a studio at Chisenhale Art Place. She co-founded Come Quick Disaster (a platform for art) with her studio buddy – Henrietta Armstrong. They run artist crits and talks open to the public in the education room.
Kirsty writes this about her work: ‘I explore nuclear explosions as cultural, historical and iconic symbols. Referencing the scale, beauty and abhorrent nature of the atom bomb I delve into the periphery of the subject, the myths, characters and surrounding evidence. I works across a wide range of media from vast oil paintings, tapestries, projections and audioscapes to delicate paintings on glass and ceramics you could hold in your hand. Scale is an important aspect of my practice. For instance, in my painting Charlie, each square inch of linen represents 4 tons of TNT – Which in turn is the unit of measurement used to signify the yield of the explosion. These large paintings aim to confront the viewer with an all consuming landscape. If they inspect them up close, for a moment in time this is all they can see. I’m fascinated by the beauty and awe of the landscape, the dust, the glow, the force of the explosion. In this master plan to kill ourselves off, we’ve shown ourselves the end.’
Her solo exhibitions include: ‘That Lethal Cloud’ Studio KIND, Devon, UK (2023) ‘Heavy Weather’ Splice, Perseverance Works, London, UK (2023) ‘Foul and Awesome Display’ Vane Gallery, Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK (2019) ‘How I Learned to Stop Worrying’ CFCCA, Manchester, UK (2016)
Harris’s work is held in public and private collections in the UK and abroad including: The National Atomic Testing Museum, Nevada, USA and The Peace Museum, Bradford, UK. She is a new member of the Contemporary British Painting Group.
More information on Kirsty Harris’ practice, and all our studio artists, can be found on our Studio Artists page