A talented, individual and up-and-coming artist, Joe was born and grew up in Birmingham and studied Landscape architecture at Leeds. Following a spell in London, Joe moved to Cornwall in 2007 and began experimenting with differing mediums in which to work. Stumbling across a form a traditional Moroccan lime plaster, called Tadelakt, traditionally used in interior decorative wall decoration, Joe began to develop a highly individual approach to his art, one which combines centuries-old techniques with a modern eye.
In Joe’s words:
“The powdered lime plaster is mixed with water and pigment, and applied with a plasterer’s trowel. As the plaster cures it can be burnished with a polishing stone to achieve a smooth, velvety finish. I have always made art in a variety of different mediums, from pencil and charcoal drawings to oil painting, and wood carving, and since I began using Tadelakt I feel I have I genuinely found my voice. I have developed my own unique techniques to create my artworks, such as carving into the finished surface of the plaster when it is fully cured, or mixing different coloured plaster together when wet. The pieces are usually waxed with ‘punic wax’, a refined form of beeswax, and then buffed to achieve a semi-glass finish.
My work is informed largely by the landscape, I aim to capture the essential nature of elements within the landscape. The upright natural and manmade forms which adorn the land such as bare trees in winter, pylons, telegraph poles, standing stones, etc. These elements end up as extremely abstracted, reduced, and sometimes distorted. They become minimal, balanced compositions, such as a simple series of lines to capture the essence of trees against the sky.
I am also interested in the nature of spiritual belief, the universal search for meaning which captivates all cultures. This leads me to religious symbolism, and in a more abstract sense, sacred geometry. Circles often find their way into my work, this essential, elemental and elegant shape appears in the sacred art of cultures from all over the world, and from cultures of the distant past. I find circles to be calming and meditative, to make as well as to look at.
My aim is to make quiet, contemplative, minimal art which will connect with people at a deep, universal level.”