A sneaky peek… finished today!

A sneaky peek at my latest work, ‘A spoonful of sugar’.

This has been an essential work for me to produce. I have realised it has been an important and cathartic process. It has enabled me to explore and express creatively, the changes and the challenges that have impacted my nearest and dearest over the last year or so. This work also enables my own voice, with the inevitable impact on myself, expressing this can be challenging.

‘A spoonful of sugar’ is broadly about the impact of  Diabetes both on the patients and the family caring for and supporting them.

Want to see more?

Anywhere near Norwich, UK,  May 2nd or 3rd? Why not pop along to Turn the Page 2014. This will be the location of this works first outing!

ASpoonfulOfSugar-detail01 jo Howe Bookart Artist books
A spoonful of sugar – detail

turn the page 2014 is nearly here!

This looks like it will be another exciting, rich and diverse event. I am so looking forward to being part of this again. I will have new work on show, some big, some small but all fabulously bookish!

I hope to see you there.

Photo: turn the page artists' book fair 2014 THIS YEARS POSTER
download the poster, print one out for yourself, or share it with your mailing lists.
Tell the world you're a book artist exhibiting or you're going to a workshop or taking part in the Elbow Room live sessions or most importantly of all YOU are coming along to support our event AND remember when tweeting about it please use #ttp2014bookart thank you :)



A spoonful of sugar (working title) - work in progress Jo Howe

A spoonful of sugar… working title

The work is continuing well, small crystallised paper cups in various stages of development are starting to overflow from their shelf in the kitchen!

Slightly diverted by this … lovely!

jo howe book sculpture
distractions that delight me!

And now the context of the cup form, together with its original contents (ok, so not quite… a wee adjustment with some well placed text)

I have also located the exact container for this work to exist within. Love it when that happens!


A spoonful of sugar (working title) - work in progress Jo Howe
A spoonful of sugar (working title) – work in progress
A spoonful of sugar (working title) work in progress jo howe book sculpture

Work in progress – Loving the process

I have been super busy at the moment, and  being able to get into the studio for some lengthy sessions has been a joy,  actually, rather funny too.  When asked what did I do at work today, I found it quite hilarious to show the results of my labours. Not convinced they really understood how much work it took to produce such a small outcome.

Anyway, I have found myself working up two new pieces concurrently, a most interesting process. This is quite unusual for me. My usual working methods finds me absorbed in one particular piece, and,  as is so often the case, ideas pop up whilst in this process, I generally just jot these down, quickly sketch these out and return to them when my brain is ready to explore them with vigour.

Nothing to nobody (working title) work in progress jo howe book sculpture
Nothing to nobody (working title) work in progress

I find that this time, and I am sure that this is because the work production stage currently is somewhat laborious, my mind just wanted to wander away, skipping along various different paths and really didn’t want to stop exploring.

This is actually quite beneficial, as sometimes the struggle to stay present to a piece of work when the production is monotonous can be quite difficult.

So, I reached for the sketchbook, and again noted ideas, made quick sketches, but this time, that pixie part of the brain was having none of it. A record of an idea was just not good enough! Consequently, honouring this particular diversion, I am now working on two completely unrelated works at the same time (well almost simultaneously… would be interesting if I could actually produce one work in my left hand and the other in my right).

So here we have the other work in progress too… yes those pesky paper cups are back, and this time I understand why I was drawn to them… Watch this space!

A spoonful of sugar (working title) work in progress jo howe book sculpture
A spoonful of sugar (working title) work in progress



Jo Howe book sculpture echoes-of-fragrant-voices

Interviewed for Hertfordshire Visual Arts

I was most fortunate to be interviewed by the lovely Clare Kendal Bate on behalf of  Hertfordshire Visual Arts. They produce a monthly newsletter, and I am fortunate enough to be chosen as one of their featured artists.

Go to interview

HVA  is run by an enthusiastic voluntary Organising Group, with members from all areas of involvement in the visual arts.

HVA aims to:

  • Provide ways for artists of all disciplines, amateur or professional, to meet and exchange ideas and information.
  • Encourage professionalism and high standards in its members and their dealings with artists’ employers, facilitators, galleries and supporters.
  • Raise awareness of and promote accessibility to the visual arts in Hertfordshire.
  • Lobby for wider opportunities for artists and better facilities for the visual arts.
  • Represent the County’s artists to Local, County, Regional and National bodies.

Exhibiting at Trestle Arts Base

Jo Howe book sculpture echoes-of-fragrant-voices
Echoes of fragrant voices

I am pleased to announce that my exhibition, ‘Echoes of Fragrant Voices’ will be showing at the lovely Trestle Arts Base in St Albans for a month, opening this Saturday 11th January. Please ensure you check the website for opening times.

Trestle Arts Base

Great start to a new year!

Variation of surface intensity-detail jo howe book sculpture
Variation of surface intensity-detail

Super delighted to have found out today that I have been once again accepted for Turn the Page.

Turn the page artists’ book fair is a UK and international exhibiting and selling platform for artists who are creating work that is inspired by the structural and conceptual properties of the book form.

The event is held over 2 days in the spectacular atrium
at the Forum, Norwich and is fast establishing its place amongst the top UK Book Art events.

Dates this year are Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd May 2014

I really enjoyed this excellently organised event last year. The quality of work on offer was very high, the artists engaging and exciting and the visitors were just lovely!

Looking forward to May!



Exhibitions…Just like the buses!

Isn’t it always the way. A drought in viable exhibiting opportunities then four come along at once!

So, and of course not pointing this towards my American readers (commute would be a bit of a stretch!), here’s what’s happening very, very soon.

Oh, and yes, fingers crossed does work sometimes 🙂

Solo show – Between the Lines

Private View 27 November 2013, 6pm to 8pm

Showing a small sample of work in the new Brent Civic Centre.
Between the Lines Jo Howe solo exhibition

In Search of Secrets

Another group ‘Pop up Exhibition’ organised by the lovely Rebecca Jarvest , showing two of my works.

East Contemporary Art: A Collection of 21st Century Practice

26 November, 6pm – 8pm, Waterfront Art Gallery, University Campus Suffolk, Ipswich.

An evening of conversation in the Waterfront Gallery. ‘What is a 21st Century Collection?’ an exchange of ideas plus the second exhibition of the collection featuring one of my works from the collection.

And last but not least, I have been most fortunate to have been selected to show in UH Galleries Eastern Approaches
Open to the public from Thursday 5 December 2013 until Sunday 12 January 2014 at The Museum of St Albans

Fingers crossed!

I have finally got some new work to completion, just in time for a submission deadline (fingers crossed). There is something quite interesting about completing  work and then not having long to sit with it before it leaves the contemplative space that is my studio. I tend to sit with my work and communicate with it for some time after it has been completed. It is not necessarily that the work shifts. I think it is almost an honouring exercise, a re-engagement with the work from more of a distance than when in the throws of process, offering alternative perspectives.

This does have it’s downside of course. I have been ‘honouring’ a piece of work now for about a year! It is just not ready to leave. I am listening to that wisdom… some day it will be ready, perhaps.

Variation of surface intensity

Book pages, wooden chest, pyrography, acrylic boxes.

Pyrography text on box reads…

From the core, an eruption of significant emotional magnitude penetrates the outer shell.

The outpouring is chaotic yet strangely structured, but always hard to predict.

The waves of internal detritus and debris are powerful and all consuming.

Those close enough to witness this explosion are never unaffected.

All ground beneath us shifts, cracks and dissolves the solidity that holds one upright.

The vibrations are felt for hours afterwards, slowly but surely their magnitude dissipates until, eventually, all is still.

This stillness, an uncomfortable calm, both quiet and loud in its silence.

Eventually a soft noise breaks into one’s consciousness, like a chink of light cutting through the rock that veils the valley floor, illuminating our path.

The reality of one’s very existence? Perhaps the way forward?

Pandora’s Box

Book pages, apothecary jar, cardboard box.