Kingston Artist Buffy Kimm Talks To Pullingers

Buffy Kimm is a Kingston Artist, designer and lecturer at Kingston University.  An all round busy lady!  Buffy kindly spared a few minutes to talk about her work and plans for the year ahead.

buffy kimm assemblage

Where Did Buffy Kimm Get Inspiration For Her Work?

After studying Three Dimensional Design, Buffy Kimm worked for the Royal Opera House, English National Opera and The Royal Shakespeare Company.  Buffy also spent time prop making and modelmaking for West End Theatre productions before working as a set designer for the BBC.

Modelmaking has played a significant role in the design process throughout Buffy Kimm’s career. Her interest in space and how forms and texture relate within it are evident in her mixed media work.  Buffy loves to experiment with shape and texture using paper, card and metal as well as found objects. Buffy Kimm’s photography and in particular her interest in architectural details and natural forms quite often provide a starting point for her mixed media pieces.

Buffy Kimm works from a studio at the ASC studios in Kingston and is a member of KAOS (Kingston Artist Open Studios).  Buffy also currently teaches on the MA Production Design for Film and TV at Kingston University.

Buffy Kimm  assemblage 2


We Ask Kingston Artist Buffy Kimm A Few Questions:

Which living artist would you like to have a drink with?

Cornelia Parker, definitely coffee.  I love the exuberance of her work, she is a real inspiration to me.  I would love to chat with her about where she gets her ideas from and to see her studio.  Norman Ackroyd.  I would love to get tips for how to improve my etching, as he is the master.  He breaks the rules and this allows him to achieve really special outcomes.

And which non-living artist?

I would love to have met MC Escher.  He was always an inspiration for me whilst growing up and at college.  Now that I have started etching, I can really appreciate his work even more.  His attention to detail and mad ideas are really inspirational.

If you could show your work anywhere on anything where would it be?

At the Guggenheim in New York.  I love the building, and I would love to go to New York.

What’s in your Art Kit?

I have a tool box full of etching equipment, along with scalpels, blades, glue, pencils, promarkers, drawing pens, a set of compasses (really important for me).  I use Somerset & Fabriano papers to create my paper assemblages, and I have collections of metal tubes, copper sheet, general rubbish that could be useful.  I also have a magnifying light which is the best addition to my kit.

Buffy kimm studio

Which sketchbooks do you use & why?

I like to use the ring bound square sketchbooks with hard black covers.  These I can use in a 3D way as well as sketching.  I also like the ones with brown pages as I like the way the sketches look on the paper.  However I am not really a sketchbook person but I should make more of an effort.  I think a sketch a day would be a challenge, but definitely a good move.

Is there an art product you could not do without?

A medical scalpel as a lot of my work is hand cut paper and card.  Also UHU glue and scissors and a set of compasses.

Are there any art materials you would love to try?

I would love to have a go at screenprinting and collagraphy (a print making process).  I would also like to learn how to weld.

What are you working on at the moment & hoping to achieve this year?

I am working on an abstract piece based on scaffolding poles.  I am hoping to exhibit it in an exhibition in Oldenburg in October, along with some of the other Kingston Artist Open Studios artists.

Are you entering any open submissions, awards, artfairs this year?

I am exhibiting some work at the Riverside Gallery in Richmond which runs until the 25th May 2014.  I have also submitted a paper assemblage and an etching to the The Royal Academy.

I will be exhibiting in the Surrey Artists Open Studios in June.  I will also be submitting artwork for an open exhibition in Oldenburg, Germany, in October with a group of Kingston artists.

I exhibited work in an exhibition called Formations along with three other artitsts at The Lightbox in Woking which closed on the 3rd March.

What is the best piece of advice you have been given?

Experiment and don’t be afraid to cut up work and re think the concept.  Also work on a body of work rather than lots of different subjects.

What is your most notable achievement to date?

Just starting to do my own work is my most notable achievement.  I have been a set designer through my working life and went on to teach design.  When the BBC stopped having a design department I decided to teach.

I was forever suggesting ideas for students to work on and finally I decided that I should take my own advice and just get on with it.  My work is definitely influenced by my design background, particularly the model making side of set design.

Do you have a favourite project/piece of work?

My favourite piece to date is this one:

buffy kimm favourite

What would your dream project be?

My dream project would be to create a really large piece based on my paper structures that would fill a room.  Having seen some of Anthony Gormley’s installations at the Hayward Gallery,  I would like to be given a room there to create a walk in sculpture.

We’re looking forward to seeing it Buffy and thank you for your time!  Buffy Kimm has since been shortlisted for the Royal Academy Summer Show.  Congratulations!

Keep in touch and up to date with Buffy Kimm’s work at

Pullingers Art Shop sell a large selection of the Art Supplies that Buffy Kimm talks about.  We also stock various architectural metal and plastic sheets, tubes and rods for model making in our stores.

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