Charmaine Lurch

  • Sycorax, 2017, mixed gage wire, various sizes. The sculpture, Revisiting Sycorax, investigates the dichotomy of voicelessness and empowerment. The figure, constructed with twists and coils of wire, embodies the character Sycorax in Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Sycorax, the mother of Caliban, described as a witch “of the vile race” is invisible and voiceless in the play. The intertwining wire-work, reminiscent of DNA strands, together with the female image, attempts to reconstruct a sense of ancestral bodies and present a present day resilient female subject.
  • Visible Carriage, 2017, MDF, metal paint, stainless steel, wood wheel, 8’x10’
  • Wild bee grouping, 2019, mixed gage wires/wool, varied sizes
  • Wild bees, commission, 2014. Photo Carlos Osorio/Toronto Star
  • A Complicated Material, 2019 Acrylic/wire on canvas 36 x48"
  • Maquette, ongoing, bee with Sycorax sculpture,
  • Re-reading, 2017 charcoal on paper, 36x36" "we share our lessons of unknowing ourselves and in this refuse what they want us to be" K. McKittrick
  • Being Belonging & Grace, 2017various sizes. Charcoal sketched forms express movement and emotion, allowing us to know this presence as active. These placements position the figure at leisure, at play, and in everyday living, and simultaneously counters fixed notions of Blackness while calling attention to the specificity of race.

Charmaine Lurch is an interdisciplinary visual artist whose work draws attention to human-environmental relationalities. Lurch’s paintings and sculptures are conversations on infrastructures and the spaces and places we inhabit. Working with a range of materials and reimagining our surroundings—from bees and taxi cabs to The Tempest and quiet moments of joy, Lurch subtly connects Black life and movement globally.

Lurch offers us materials that are seemingly simple and familiar. Figures marked in charcoal, perform dynamic movements, allowing us to visualize active presence. Paint both pleases and jars vision to create new ways of seeing and knowing. Wire takes up space, is a drawing in space, wire moves through space. Removed from tooling & machining, the formations casts shadows, trace landscapes, and is a means to mark the inside/outside of things. These elements are her expressive and textural messengers. Bound together with research, they create signifying forms, that seek to re-configure and rewire perception and ideas.

Lurch’s holds a Master’s in Environmental Studies from York University, is a graduate of Sheridan College – Faculty of Visual and Creative Arts, studied at Ontario College of Art and Design University, and The School of Visual Arts in New York City. Her work has been exhibited at: The Art Gallery of Ontario, Montreal museum of Fine Arts, The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, The Liu Institute in Vancouver, Nuit Blanche Toronto, The National Gallery of Jamaica, and more. Her work has been published in Artforum, No 1 Katherine McKittrick’s Top Ten, 2020, The Black Shoals, Book by Tiffany Lethabo King, Duke University Press, 2019, Settling In Place, published interview, MacLaren Art Centre, Barrie, 2018, Every. Now. Then: Reframing Nationhood, Book, 2017, Writings on Dionne Brand, TOPIA: Canadian Journal, Illustrated cover, 2015 When Ackee Meets Codfish, Jamaicans in Canada, Book, 2014

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  • Artist Info

    • Toronto, Ontario M4J 3Y2

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