Up and running in Rugby


So… we are up and running at The Lewis Gallery, in the historic setting of The Rugby School.

We (Paper Scissors Stone) are delighted at how the work is responding to the space and the works with each other. It really is a fabulous gallery with lots of space and different flavours of environments, dictating  interesting curating decisions that we found particularly rewarding.

Some of the Paper Scissors Stone artists, myself included, will be on site on Saturday 28th November 11am-2pm. Take the opportunity to pop along to see the work and have a chat too.

It would be lovely to see you.

How do I get there? Click here for map Turn into the gateway just after the pedestrian traffic lights on Barby Road and follow the road round. Posters are attached to the gates.

School map  Note: Access from Barby Road only.



This time next week…


This time next week, I’ll be cleaning off the glass, checking off my list(s) and finalising the space for this, the last Paper Scissors Stone show this year, and my goodness, it’s a big one!

A fabulous gallery space, The Lewis Gallery, in the historically beautiful setting of The Rugby School. I’m very excited to see the work together in this large space, and delighted to have the fabulously talented Mark L’Argent join us as guest Artist.

It has been a really good year working with Hillary Taylor, Caroline Lumb and Janie Graham on this project. I think you’ll see the results of artists conversations and individual responses to the beautiful material that is paper.

So, very much hope to see you there. All the artists will all be at the opening reception, Friday 6th November 7-9pm ready with conversation and light refreshment.




Time flies… new studio, new work


Well, it has been quite a while since my last post. Life has, as ever,  interfered with everything else i’d rather have been doing for quite a while now.

Hey, ho… all necessary experiences, some good, some not quite so good…  no doubt they will all inform my practice at some stage or the other.

One of the more positive shifts of late, has been a studio move. I have been so very lucky in sharing my work space with some supremely talented artists in the past, not only at The Forge, as a Digswell Arts fellow but more recently,  with Jojo Taylor, Anji Archer, and Christina Bryant. My old studio was a lovely space, but the location was never idyllic and the studio was a little too dark, despite the beautiful window (rather a carrot dangler). I have also found I have out grown the space, size wise.

Old studio
Old studio

That great fortune of  a working environment with talented artists and generally all round lovely people continues with a new studio sharing with the fabulous Gill Ayre and Karen Picton.

The move has enabled a real kick start in some interesting work for me and lots of ideas bouncing around. The location works better, slightly nearer to home, on a farm with great scenery, great ‘roomies’ lovely neighbours and a place to picnic at lunchtimes!

I’m sure winter will prove a challenge, but I am quite well adapted to the extremes of an unheated environment. At present, I am really enjoying the sun streaming in the window, all through the day, illuminating the space delightfully.

Studio exterior
Studio interior
Studio interior

New work in progress

A little sample of work in progress. This follows on from some very recent pieces, still on show at Space2 Gallery, Watford Museum until 29th August. This new work will be shown at the Lewis Gallery, Rugby School, Warwickshire in November and December this year as the continuation of the Paper Scissors Stone touring exhibition.

Work in progress - detail
Work in progress – detail
Work in progress - detail
Work in progress – detail

As ever, the remnants of my process delight almost as much as the work itself… or is that just me and my preoccupation with anything papery!


Paper, Scissors, Stone – Taking paper beyond the page is touring!

‘Absolutely exquisite work – beautiful show and such an interesting interplay between the different artists’.

‘A show of great sensitivity and invention’.

‘Paper won’t seem the same again’.

Come and see for yourself – Paper, Scissors, Stone is touring!

Next venue Space2 – Watford Museum

Exhibition Invite paper scissors stone at watford museum

Jo Howe Book Arts Artist Books

Pages turned in Norwich – Highlights

Jo Howe Book Arts Artist Books

Just recovering my energies from another fabulously engaging weekend at The Forum in Norwich for Turn the Page, where once again I was selected to show alongside some incredibly talented book artists and engage in all sorts of intriguing, enlightening and sometimes heart warming conversations with visitors and exhibitors alike.

For my own work, I had adopted a slightly different approach this year, focussing on one installation piece, consisting of five elements – entitled, Nothing to Nobody.

Nothing to Nobody

“…nothing, the negative, the empty, is exceedingly powerful. Nothing is more fertile than emptiness… You can’t have something without nothing.”
Alan Watts

Continuing an exploration of the notion of ‘nothingness’, first investigated for a group exhibition in 2014 by exploring emotional responses to ‘the space in-between’, my practice continues to focus on the frustrations of human communication working with old manuscripts that bear the physical imperfections and aromas of past human handling and thus retain elements of their human presence. The book or page becomes a tool for looking inwards to our evolving personal narratives rather than the read contents of the book as text.

This further evolution of the work, sees the original book ‘Nothing to Nobody’ de-constructed, with all elements of the book united with the work shown last year ‘Self fulfilling prophecy’ which holds all the text from the main novel quilled, encased in clamped acrylic. The narrative expands by combining this work with all other elements of the original book. The work questions our sense of self, focusing on disconnection, alienation and silenced voices, be it from external pressures and/or internal restrictions.

A particular highlight for me this year was to be showing alongside the incredibly talented Brian Dettmer, a New York-based artist known for his detailed and innovative sculptures with books and other forms of antiquated media. Dettmer’s work has been exhibited internationally in numerous solo and group exhibitions at galleries, museums and art centres and has been an inspiration of mine for sometime now.

Other highlights were as follows, in no particular order…

Miranda Campbell

I find Miranda’s work well balanced and her use of materials delicate and intricate. Her poetic words resonate and fit the aesthetic charm of the pieces.

Chris Ruston

The deserved winner of the inaugural Turn the Page prize, Chris’s work is rich in depth, process, colour and application.

Jen Fox

Jen’s work always resonates for me. Her work has great depth and is executed precisely and professionally. This kind of work moves me, and this years piece was no exception.

Dizzy Pragnell

I just had to keep going back to look at Dizzy’s work. I was drawn in by the innovative approach and the visual aesthetic of the edible book forms. Delicious work!

Karen Apps

Karen’s work is always finely executed and is simply beautiful. You can see in all her work, extensive development and research has been undertaken. I was looking at her website to provide a link and came across this, an artwork in its own right! I love seeing process, and in Karen’s work, that lead to the accomplished outcome.

And finally, I was really rather surprised about how I would experience Two Coats Colder, a quirky progressive acoustic folk band performing a mix of self penned traditional & contemporary songs at Turn the Page for the weekend.  I’m not normally easily engaged in folk music as a genre. However, They were actually sublime. I really enjoyed it and a total treat for me to be able to hear them.


Finalising work for Turn The Page 2015

It’s been a busy weekend finalising work for Turn the Page 2015. I am really excited again to be a part of this fantastic event. I always find something unexpected, exciting and really rather delicious to experience, I am sure this year will be no different.  Are you coming? If so, don’t forget to say hi… I will be there both days.

Jo Howe Book sculpture Jo Howe Book sculpture Jo Howe Book sculpture

Well worth the visit!



Delighted to be featured in ‘Hertfordshire Life’ – The secret lives of books

@hertslife pg1 Jo Howe

Absolutely thrilled to be in this months ‘Hertfordshire Life‘, a three page article by Caroline Foster. A really well written article… she has definitely ‘got me’ and my work, how lovely!

@hertslife pg2+3 Jo Howe

Also highlights the current show ‘Paper, Scissors, Stone – Taking paper beyond the page’ at the beautiful setting of Parndon Mill gallery, Harlow.

Closing Event – Easter Monday 6th April 2-4pm

This will be the last day of the show and all exhibiting artists will be on site between 2-4pm as well as an African Drum group (including yours truly) to provide some uplifting vibrant music on the green (or in the prioject space if the weather is against us). Do come along if you are free… this should be fun, (dancing is encouraged!).

Link here

Work selected for MMoFA

Jo Howe book sculpture distortion-of-time-detail
Distortion of time (detail) – Museum collection, Madison Museum of Fine Art

I am thrilled and absolutely delighted to announce that I have been fortunate enough to have had a piece of work (Distortion of time) selected for the permanent collection at Madison Museum of Fine Art, in  Madison, Georgia, U.S.A.

The work will also be exhibited as part of a group show next year, entitled ‘British Intelligence’ at the Museum, showcasing their growing collection from British Artists.

A little about MMoFA

Founded in 2003 by Michele Bechtell, the Madison Museum of Fine Art (MMoFA) is a 501-c-3 tax exempt charitable not-for-profit educational art history museum with exhibition galleries, teaching gardens, Museum Store, and Tea Terrace. A collecting institution, MMoFA  preserves, interprets, and imaginatively displays original works of art by nationally and internationally recognized visual art masters in a lively, intimate, pedestrian-friendly atmosphere for the education, edification, and spiritual nourishment of all persons living and traveling in the Southeastern US. As an educational institution, the Museum offers free permanent and traveling exhibitions, lectures, film, educational programming, and an extra classroom setting to study original objects to supplement the inter-disciplinary curricula of public, private, and home schools in the region.


The vision of MMoFA is to be a superbly operated internationally respected intimate visual art history museum system with a distinguished permanent collection, self-sustaining endowment, habitual visitation, engaging and well-attended educational programs, and to do so with sufficient institutional strength to delight many generations to come.