Thurrock artist on show in Sheffield

Art Perceptualism windowTim Harrold is currently holding an exhibition of his 'assemblage' art work at the 35 Chapel Walk gallery in Sheffield.

Called Perceptualism, it is the largest show of his collected works to date, with over 40 pieces on display.

"35" is a small gallery and arts centre run by the Methodist Circuit of the Sheffield District. Located in a busy passageway between major roads in the city centre, "35" works as a drop-in centre hosting a number of activities, including artists' talks, art therapy sessions, as well as regular shows by local and other artists, Christian or with locally connections. There are also some artists' studios on site.

The gallery is managed by Naomi Gordon, a performance artist interested in creating a space for interactivity with the arts with a spiritual emphasis, immersive in character.

A private view was held on Sunday 2 April (see photo at the bottom of this article), and on Tuesday 4 April, Tim was asked to address a group of methodist ministers and others as part of a presentation promoting the gallery's work in the community and the creative sector. Perceptualism comes to an end on Easter Sunday, 16 April.


Sheffield show poster v1Born: London 1960
Lives: Grays Thurrock, Essex
Based: High House Artists’ Studios, Purfleet, Thurrock, Essex
Background: BA (Hons.) Degree in Expressive Arts at Brighton Polytechnic inc. Performance artist with Theatre of the Bleeding Obelisk 1982-85

Tim (right) has worked as an art tutor in both secondary and further education, and as a community and youth worker using creativity in contemplative installations for Christian faith community.

He has illustrated a number of books in a graphic pen and ink style.

His work has appeared in numerous exhibitions in Essex and London over recent years and has been reviewed in national publications. He is also a photographer, writer and poet. Tim and his wife Vera facilitate creative workshops.

Tim is a member of the Christian artists' commission4mission group and exhibits in the annual Thurrock Art Trail (aka ThAT).

Among his favourite visual artists and influences are: Joseph Beuys, Giorgio de Chirico, Joseph Cornell, Marcel Duchamp, Rene Magritte, Tom Phillips and Andrei Tarkovsky.

Artist’s statement

Perceptualism is where the Conceptual and the Metaphysical meet.

My work is full of allegory, metaphor and meaning. It is contemplative and meditative, with the underlying themes of faith and the spiritual.

I use found objects to make boxed assemblages or readymade sculptures. The architectural model figures and a few of the objects are sourced.

The collected and rediscovered items are reimagined, reassigned and reconfigured into multimedia miniature theatrical scenes or dioramas, and freestanding pieces. Previously random backstories come together into new poetic narratives: visual parables.

There’s an element of surprise, something of the surreal, the hidden waiting to be revealed.

Art Perceptualism 2An Introduction to Perceptualism


  • Perceptualism: where the Conceptual and the Metaphysical meet
  • Assemblage: a work of art made by grouping found or unrelated objects; a collection or gathering of things
  • Readymade: a mass-produced article selected by an artist and displayed as a work of art
  • Installation: an art exhibit constructed within a gallery
  • Parable: a story with a spiritual meaning or application - Jesus told parables to stimulate curiosity about the kingdom
  • Diorama: a model representing a scene with 3-dimensional figures, which can be in miniature, like a theatrical set mock-up
  • Reimagine: reinterpret an event, work of art, etc., imaginatively; rethink; transform by the renewal of one’s mindset

The words Perceptualism and Perceptualist were first conceived in a pub in Ealing, London, in the spring of 2010.

These words have their root in the idea of the act of perceiving. Isaiah 43:19 says, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?”  

Roy Edworthy (of The Craftsmen Group) once said: “Seeing is looking at the surface, or into the shallows; but perceiving is looking deeper, into the depths.”

To perceive is to see beyond and into spiritual reality, thereby seeing everything as spiritual - everything in God’s creation is simultaneously both surface and symbol.

The terms imply a combination of - and an oblique tangent away from - Conceptualism and Metaphysical Art, into the numinous and parabolic.

Art Perceptualism 1Looking and listening

As the viewer walks around the exhibition and looks at the works, Tim suggests the viewer imagine him or herself to be walking through a book of stories. Don’t just look, but listen. And ask:

  • How have the found elements combined to tell a new story?
  • What is this story all about?
  • In what way is it a parable?
  • Does it mean anything to me?
  • What have I learnt?
  • What am I going to do about it?
  • Who can I tell?
One piece in the Perceptualism exhibition that caused a lot of discussion was Hymn No.42, an old birdcage containing people held in small bottles suspended from the top bars. One of the bottles appears to have fallen, and the escapee is sitting on top - outside - the cage. Hanging on the inside of the cage is the number 42 (on an old wooden lotto counter) like a hymn number in a church service. See the photo at the bottom of this article.

Endeavour installation

Included in the exhibition is Endeavour, an installation consisting of 70 found poems set to 70 pieces of music, accompanied by 70 short films.

The found poetry was written using John Masefield’s 1910 novel Lost Endeavour, bought in a junk shop in 2011.

Tim's original voice recording was made by Gareth Marsh. Music backing each poem was composed and performed by Richie Ballah, Matt Chapman, Matt Leeder, Gareth Marsh, Mark Stirk and Tim (with help). Final production by Gareth Marsh.

The accompanying films toeach poem were made by Jonny Harrold and Tim, and edited by Jonny. The installation is running continuously while the art exhibition is on. A still from the film can be seen below right.

Art Perceptualism filmAlso...

As well as the actual work being on sale, also available are:

  • Small framed assemblages by Tim & Vera Harrold
  • Boxed Assemblages by Tim Harrold
  • Postcards showing Boxed Assemblages and details of work
  • Greetings Cards showing details of work
  • Endeavour - Original Soundtrack CD

All these will be available during the 2017 Thurrock Art Trail, 8-23 July, when Tim's work will be shown alongside that of John Espin in St Catherine's Church, Princess Margaret Avenue, East Tilbury Village RM18 8PB.

For more information and pictures of Tim's assemblages and photographs, please see:

Also see Tim on:

Art Perceptualism PVArt Perceptualism 42


Tim Harrold, 07/04/2017

Grays URC logo
Octobers Refresh Day at the URC 
The programme for the day More ...
Grays URC
wellbeing destinychapel
Wellbeing in South Ockendon 
Find out about well being at this event in South Ockendon More ...
Destiny Chapel
Launch Event for the graham tour 
Learn about the Graham Tour and all that is involved from the beginning to the end. More ...
advance 2020 a
Advance 2020 
Advance 2020 aims to promote and stir up the gift of the evangelist, building towards a year of outreach throughout the UK in 2020 More ...
Andrew Blakey