Jo Parker

Artist Statement

With a background in counselling and integrative therapy, my concerns lie within the notion of self and the human condition yet are also rooted within the psychological and sociological issues experienced within contemporary society. My tendency to respond to the plight of others with empathy, combined with my own autobiographical experience creates narratives which form a visual storytelling of personal histories that reach beyond the self and into a wider social context, or the long view.  Current work recognises ‘her story’ in visual representations of issues regarding feminist ageing.

I consider myself a conduit of personal narratives conveyed by the spoken word; their telling creating images in my mind, an empathetic response and point of departure for much of my work.  However, material thinking gives rise to less literal outcomes as I explore non-traditional materials such as PVA glue to test their strengths and limitations and potential for scale. Narrative drives the medium as I sculpt the invisible in such common place substances, echoing the feeling of invisibility experienced by ageing women.  The behaviour of PVA glue as sculpting material, creasing and folding into beautiful fluid shapes reflects the transience of ageing skin.  This delicacy and translucency when juxtaposed with the visceral nature of rusting wire creates a sense of incongruency between these two opposites that creates a strong sense of tension.

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