Loraine Monk’s family were working-class Londoners; her background has influenced her politics, academic research and artist practice. Her work is inspired by local and community history.
Having moved from painting to relief printing two years ago, she used the act of cutting to make tactile the visceral anger of inequality and political disengagement. Deliberately echoing the work of the German Expressionists, she made a series of images involving protests, exploring the bitter divisions of British society highlighted by “Brexit ”.
Recently her practice has grown to include etching. Since the UK lockdown, she has worked using dry point etching, to continue digging, literally and figuratively beneath the surface, creating new images exploring environmental destruction and political upheaval. Most recently, the Black Lives Matter protests and Right-wing counter demonstrations . Like the Brexit series they represent the divisions running deep within British society. Loraine believes the medium of printing, with its representation of light and dark, and sheer physicality needed to tear the image from its placid surface, to the turmoil beneath, is a perfect medium to represent political struggle. She continues to use print to explore the bitter fragmentations of society.
She recently completed a residency at Kingston Museum, London (January 2020).
In May 2020, as part of the Exhibition, Beyond the Frame, the Orleans Gallery published an interview that explored some of her experiences that led to her becoming an artist.