Mapping the Dorset Coast

The Jurassic Coast is England’s first natural World Heritage Site, a ninety-five mile
long stretch of coastline running from Orcombe Point in east Devon to Old Harry Rocks in east Dorset. Its geology spans the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, 185 million years of the earth’s history. Erosion by sea, weather and human activity has resulted in a huge variety of different landforms; cliffs, beaches, landslides, arches and caves, which provide an incredibly rich visual and scientific resource.

Old maps, books, records and artefacts from the museum combined with walks along the coast have been the inspiration for these evocative paintings that blur the line between representation and abstraction. Viewing the coast from the land, sea and air, layers of colour convey sensations, changes in the weather and seasons. The working method behind the pictures, scouring, building accretions of paint, collaging, and sanding down, echoes the archaeological and geological history of the ancient coastal landscape we see today. Like the geological spectrum of the coast, these images are stratified, creating distinct bands of paint and colour in complex layers built up over time.

Jeremy Gardiner