Current Exhibition

22nd February - 1st April

A journey of communication by Jo Howe. A collection of work made from paper, books and painting exploring conscious and unconscious processing - thought provoking and emotive work. 'Art to me is using my voice without opening my mouth

Please click any of the images to visit the slideshow.

Jo graduated from the University of Hertfordshire with a first class Bachelors degree (2004) and a Masters degree with distinction (2005). Jo was a fellow at Digswell Arts Trust (2008-2012) and went on to be a Director and Trustee (2013-2016). Jo's work is held both in National and International Museum collections. Her work explores frustrations in human communication, seeking to express the difficulty of speaking without being heard.

“I select materials carefully by considering the aesthetic quality of text and relevance of the book's title. Working with old manuscripts that bear the physical imperfections and aromas of past human handling and thus retain their human presence, are an essential component. The book or page becomes a tool for looking inwards to our evolving personal narratives rather than reading the contents of the book as text. The fragmentation, removal and disruption of text transforms words into visual clues. By resisting meaning in purely linguistic terms the reader is invited to respond at an intuitive and emotional level.”

Over time, Jo's work evolved to incorporate colour, first with paper cuts and now with paint. Jo has always utilised colour as part of her studio practice and this has been an essential tool in her working methodology. This will be the first opportunity to view her paintings.

“We all have so many facets to ourselves, some that we are not necessarily conscious of. If we can just let go and respond to the now, it is extraordinary what may rise from within, to be seen, explored and sometimes understood. Colour, form and movement expresses things that sometimes I do not have the words for. I made those choices but with limited conscious thought. These choices mean something, but I may never be able to uncover that meaning. This process for me is delightful and intriguing all rolled into one. I see these works as what exists before I have the words, if ever the words come”. 

This exhibition is kindly sponsored by Longmores Solicitors.