Tim Pugh

Environmental and Mixed Media Artist

“Fish Chain”.

The temporary installation was created at St Bees beach in West Cumbria in 2017 and was created in response to environmental concerns about fish ingesting plastic debris and the potential dangers of toxic  chemicals being introduced into the maritime food chain.The plastic debris was gathered from the tideline just prior to the construction and is deposited in large volumes on West Cumbrian beaches during winter storms. 


“Fortune Tellers”.

The temporary mixed media artwork was made in response to environmental concerns about fish ingesting plastic debris into their digestive systems in the ocean..I sketched and cut out outlines of Irish Sea fish drawn onto plastic drink bottle labels and attached them to a capstan at Whitehaven Harbour in West Cumbria. The plastic labels reminded me of the fortune teller plastic fish that come from Christmas Crackers that curl up in your hand .The artwork was set up and photographically documented in November 2017.

“Ceramic Tideline”.

The artwork is part of a series of temporary beach installations making use of enlarged photocopies from  collected Victorian and Edwardian ceramic segments gathered from the tideline. The ceramic as well as glass and other domestic finds are products washed up from a subterranean midden located next to the harbour wall. The copies were adhered onto a smooth boulder in the outline of a map depicting  a overhead view of the flow of nearby North Beach.The artwork was created on South Beach which is closed to the general public because of the danger of subsidence from cliffs of slag heap from an old collliery.

“Post Midden”.

I have included two images of the temporary installation created at South Beach in Whitehaven,Cumbria,in 2017.I used enlarged photocopies of retrieved Victorian ceramic pieces,scattered across the tideline on nearby North Beach.The images were glued onto a metal post that itself resembled a ceramic sculptural form over the course of a stormy afternoon.I was drawn to The idea of wrapping up a ordinary  featureless piece of metal and transforming it into a three dimensional jigsaw like form. The ceramic pieces were washed up from the site of a Victorian midden located just by the harbour wall and provide an endless supply of materials for ideas and inspiration for various artistic projects .The post dissapeared after two days of storms and was never seen again.

“Milk Jug Mural”.

The mural was created on a 7×5 foot wooden board in early September 2017 over two days during my artist in residence post at Ceramic Wales,Regent Street,Wrexham College of Art for Glyndwr University. I used enlarged photocopies of beach tideline ceramic finds collected from North Beach in Whitehaven,West Cumbria. The subject was an old 18th century Cumbrian ceramic milk jug which was relevant to the theme of the festival. The photocopies were cut out and arranged jigsaw style within the form and then pva  glued down once the correct position had been established. The artwork was created outside the main entrance to the College to attract the attention of passers by .Bad weather threatened to disrupt the process throughout but an overhead roof gave me just enough shelter. 

“Bigfoot Imprint “

“Bigfoot Imprint ” was created at South Beach in Whitehaven, West Cumbria in August 2017.The intervention was created in response to witnessing massive amounts of plastic waste deposited on the beaches in West Cumbria throughout the summer. To highlight the sheer volume and different types of plastic waste I created a towering edifice from material collected from nearly St Bees beach. I adhered the colourful waste onto a traffic cone borrowed from the nearby harbour and situated the artwork next to the sea. The cone itself acts as a warning sign and was embossed with the title “Bigfoot ” hence the title. After photographing the artwork it was disassembled and the cone returned to its spot on the street guarding against a hole in the ground. 

“Toy Soldier Drawing “

The artwork  is part of a series of drawings of retrieved toys picked up from various beaches in West Cumbria. I sketched the soldier onto discarded sheeting also found on the beach using a black marker pen. As well as highlighting environmental degradation and pollution in the marine environment I was drawn to a sense of melancholy evoked by discovering the toys washed up on the sands .Maybe the toys were left on the beach by children initially and then taken out to sea by the tide.?All the toys I have collected so far show signs of wave erosion resulting in missing limbs or soldiers minus their guns for example,resulting in dismembered states of appearance. I felt sympathy for their abandoned plight and and am curently resurrecting their status by sketching them and showing the results by the beaches they were discovered. The toy soldier drawing was pinned onto a beach groyne at St Bees beach in West Cumbria in August 2017.

“Plastic World “

The temporary installation was created and sited at South Beach in Whitehaven, West Cumbria in June 2017.The ongoing theme was plastic environmental pollution on the beaches especially at St Bees beach which seems to have plenty of plastic waste deposited on the tideline. At times, the world is seemingly drowning in plastic and I wanted to illustrate my concerns by creating a circular intervention symbolic of the planet .Ironically, I had to purchase a beach ball in order to adhere all the different types of plastic I collected from the beach in a two hour preparation session.Again, I was equally seduced by the vivid colours and enjoyed juxtapositioning the contrasting colours and shapes to create a spiky kind of  “Death Star “.The breeze wanted to push the globe across the beach and it had to be secured by hidden pebbles. After photographing the artwork it was taken to a local High school for pupils to recycle and create more artwork on the same theme.

“South Beach Map “

The temporary map /installation was created at South Beach in May 2017.The artwork is a drawing of a map of the area next to North Beach in Whitehaven where I have been collecting washed up Victorian pieces of domestic ceramic and glass on the tideline . The fragments were used to create an installation in a gallery in North Wales a month later and the map drawing on the beach was an experimental trial run to see the materials were successful and if they complimented each other. I sketched the detail from the map onto a sandstone boulder and incorporated the ceramic finds on the surface. Rainwater has since obliterated the lines leaving no trace of the drawing. I like to work on this beach and try out ideas despite the beach being inaccessible and closed to the general public. I have to squeeze through a fence and clamber down rough ground in order to get access and be mindfull of high tides that could cut me off.

“Sycamore Sketch “

The outdoor artwork is a drawing of a crumpled and shrunken sycamore leaf, sketched onto the smooth bark surface of a tree.The tree was located at Black Wood ,at the bottom of a hill called Dent near Cleator Moor in West Cumbria. I used black and white charcoal to convey the various ripples of the shrunken leaf as I embossed the sculptural form onto the dry and very smooth surface.The drawing took 3 hours to complete and resembled a tattoo in form and composition. Black Wood is a very atmospheric place to work in and at times has an eerie feel especially in Winter.