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Introducing Karen Thomas
10th January, 2020

Introducing Karen Thomas

This January, The Pilgrm sees the arrival of new artwork from French painter Karen Thomas. We caught up with the artist to find out a bit more about her journey so far, favourite books, travel tips, and what drives her forward.
You'll be able to come and see her works on display in the lounge and cafe at The Pilgrm from mid-January.

Where did the road into painting begin? 
I’ve always made things, but really started painting seriously after leaving college. I sold my first painting at an outdoor street festival in Sète, France in the late eighties and haven’t stopped since.

How would you describe your artistic style in 5 words? 
Painterly, loosely dynamic, vivacious brushstrokes

Inspration comes in the form of...
A suggestion, a chance meeting, an overheard conversation, a photo, film or memory.

Do you have a favourite piece of artwork by another artist?
It's impossible to limit myself to one piece of work! I see as many shows as I can, read biographies and scour the internet to discover new work. I like to see things that make me want to go back to the studio to get my brushes out! Amongst my current favourites; Peter Doig, Karen Kliminik, Michael Borrémans,Gerard Garouste, Alex Katz, Todd Bienvenu, Genevieve Figgis, Jules de Bailancourt, Jansson Stegner, Oda Jaune...

What about your own work - any particular favourites?
It changes all the time and it’s generally the next thing I’m doing! My favourite piece at the moment is “Starlet”, a painting on sheet canvas 65x50cm, to be shown at the Pilgrm

Any tips for young creatives?
"Build a good name. Keep your name clean. Don’t make compromises, don’t worry about making a bunch of money or being successful. Be concerned about doing good work. Protect your work and if you build a good name, eventually that name will be its own currency. Life is like a roller coaster ride, it is never going to be perfect. It is going to have perfect moments and rough spots, but it’s all worth it" - Patti Smith.
“You must work, always work,” - Rodin to Rilke.

What does craftsmanship mean to you?
A world built to last.

The Pilgrm in 5 words.
Simple, sumptuous, sustainable urban luxury

What does a day in the life of Karen Thomas look like? 
A day in the studio might begin with some research or preparatory work, correspondance, document making, social media, buying supplies, a coffee in a street café or catching up with a painter friend, swimming or a yoga class followed by painting often late into the evening or maybe a film at my favourite Diagonal cinema.

Take us to your favourite place.
One of my happiest places is Sète, 'l’île singulier’, an authentic fishing town with a strong identity located between the Mediterranean and the Etang de Thau. Take in the panoramic view at the top of the Mont Saint Clair, visit the sailor’s cemetery and the Pointe courte. Try al ‘Tielle' at the covered market, have a drink along the quais and end a summer day with a concert at the Théâtre de la Mer - the backdrop is the sea itself.

What's on the reading list?
- Haruki Murakami, current reading ‘Killing Commendatore’
- Michel Houellebecq, ‘The map and the territory’
- Patti Smith, about to embark on ‘Year of the Monkey’
- Sophie Calle, ‘Prenez soin de vous’

Hopes and dreams for 2020?
An international artist residency!

You can come and see Karen's work at The Pilgrm from mid-January until early spring 2020, free of charge.

Introducing Karen Thomas Introducing Karen Thomas Introducing Karen Thomas Introducing Karen Thomas Introducing Karen Thomas

Further Reading

Read all >
8th July, 2021 Introducing British Cheese

London’s cult cheese restaurant, The Cheese Bar, was founded in 2014 to celebrate and promote all that is great about British Cheese. You can now find their cheese on our menu at The Pilgrm, pair with cured meets from our friends at Tempus and a chilled glass of wine.

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29th June, 2021 Humorous, morbid and quirky - Fabian Monheim

We are so thrilled that our good friend Fabian Monheim is one of the 5 artists featured at The Pilgrm this summer! Over the years, he has created some incredible artwork for us and when we first opened, it was Fabian whose art was displayed on our walls.

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10th June, 2021 Christopher Fernandez' evoking photography

Christopher Fernandez is a London-based photographer who specialises in portrait photography with an atmospheric style, often described as cinematic documentary.

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4th June, 2021 Expressive moments to melancholy reflections - Adam Riches

Adam Riches' number one fan is our General Manager Sylwia, so we are super excited to be displaying his work amongst 4 other incredible artists at The Pilgrm this summer in our lounge.

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4th June, 2021 Where our cured meats come from...

If you’ve popped in to see us recently you may have seen a delicious new addition to our menu; cured meats from our friends at Tempus.

Read on >
1st June, 2021 Vouchers at The Pilgrm

Get in their good books with a gift voucher for The Pilgrm. Whether you are looking to spoil an old friend, get out the dog house or impress your mother-in-law, they’ll be getting an unforgettable experience and well-earned break.

Read on >

Hello lovely guests, friends and neighbours!

Our guests can always expect the warmest of welcomes and a most comfortable stay. Should you have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to reach out to our friendly team via hello@thepilgrm.com.

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