The 1984/85 Miners’ Strike was a turning point for Harry Malkin. He had always been interested in art and the strike gave him free time to spend sketching and painting. This time off combined with growing back problems, led him to make the decision to take redundancy at the end of the strike, ending his 20 year mining career.
In 1985, he joined Pontefract Art Club. He was the only miner in the group and he started painting landscapes, similar to the others. However he soon moved onto producing artwork drawing upon his mining memories. Recently Malkin has moved onto creating public artworks. These large sculptures are a physical reminder of mining communities where often no evidence of the pits remains. With no formal art training, Malkin is always keen to take on a challenge and experiment with new artistic mediums, but he has often found that he comes back to mining scenes.