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Terry Setch Statement


For more than 60 years I have been painting landscapes, for the last 50 years I have been recording the changes bought about by new industrial developments, lifestyle changes, wealth management and new social mores.  I have been using the pollution of the local beach, particularly the plastic detritus, as my major subject since the mid 1970s, long before concern about the damage caused by the ubiquitous, non-biodegradable plastic became widespread in this country.

Sarah Kent wrote, “The beach, a messy and polluted burial ground, is seen as the site of social and moral conflict where opposing forces and interests do battle - where the sea assaults the land, industrial growth encroaches on nature, and exploitation encounters conservation. There is rage in Setch’s pictures. Their ugliness not only challenges good taste, but is a statement of disgust at the negligence of industrial society.” Flash Art, London. Summer 1983


Monica Petzal wrote, “These are paintings to get lost in; there is a wealth of possible meaning and interpretation - there is no right way of looking at them. As evidence of one person’s attempt to bring his personal reality into form which is unified, accessible and powerful, they hold meaning for us all.” Time Out, London. 24 September 1982,


These observations are germane today and encapsulate my thinking. As an artist I continue to use conventional art materials and I incorporate detritus flotsam and jetsam, found objects and include new and recycled modern building materials.  I observe daily what happens on the people's beach.


I have to follow my own path: I am not a ‘joiner’ or part of an ‘ism’. I have tried to create an identity that is my own.

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