"When I think about people and societies I see patterns and I reduce it down to shapes and space and marks. That's how I visually represent the world."
- Jo Hummel
Jo Hummel's work is characterised by a painted and paper collaged surface on which she employs spontaneous variations of space, colour and form.
Although her painting collages are physically engaged and materially driven the context is purposefully anthropological and Hummel’s works are informed by human habits and behaviour, with a particular interest in determinism and freewill just as much as formal concerns.
Hummel runs experiments where the process often determines the outcome and provides a safe arena for improvisation, a place where rational procedures can co- exist alongside intuition. In doing this she explores the unpredictable nature of intuition and spontaneity - her practice functioning as a simulation of decision making experiences which enable her to grasp, and make use of sensations such as anxiety or serenity. And it is via these conflicting emotional states of comfort, satisfaction, anxiousness, repulsion and so on that Hummel is able to tap into the ubiquitously felt state of human uncertainty. The social structures we all exist in guide and interfere with how we feel and what we choose to do on a daily basis. Our social class, religion, gender and ethnicity all play a part in what we deem pleasant or unpleasant.
The nature of collage is that throughout its creation a work is in constant flux. The artist must negotiate the canvas by rearranging, choosing and adjusting, often over long periods and having explored hundreds, even thousands of the infinite possible outcomes. In this way the creative process itself is as significant as the final outcome.
Jo Hummel works from her studio on the Isle of Wight.
Jo Hummel studied at Kingston University London 2001-2004 and Royal College of Art London 2004-2006. Recent solo exhibitions include Safety at Sea, After Nyne Gallery London 2019, Artist in Residence, Saatchi Art Lounge, during Frieze Week London 2017, joint solo exhibition with Stephen Smith Deep End Echo, Sid Motion Gallery London and Porcelain and Paper, CAA Gallery London during London Crafts Week 2016. Her work has been included in satellite exhibition Afternoon Tea at the 53rd Venice Biennale with WW Gallery London, Jerwood Drawing Prize London 2012 and RA Summer Exhibition London and London Art Fair 2019. Joanne was long listed for the Beers London Contemporary Visions exhibition and John Moores Painting Prize 2018, and also in recent years received a number of Arts Council Grants for the Arts awards for temporary installations and research residencies. Works by Jo Hummel are included in both public and private collections and she has a growing international collector base. Her work was featured in the Observer newspaper in an article titled ‘‘Next Generation turns its back on Emin and Hirst’s conceptual artworks’ May 2011, and ‘Picking up a Picasso is one click away’ in the Times August 2013.