Jo Holdsworth, award-winning Wimbledon artist, will be showing her latest contemporary paintings of figures in London and her dynamic landscapes at the Norman Plastow Gallery on Lingfield Road SW19 4QD from 21 to 29 September 2019. If you know Jo, you will know her work is atmospheric and thought provoking. For readers who are yet to discover her talent, Jo took time out of her hectic schedule to chat with Janie Smith, Lady Wimbledon’s Culture Editor.
Janie Smith: Jo, for all your loyal followers and those who are new to your work, can you tell us a little about what to expect at your highly anticipated new show?
Jo Holdsworth: The show is called ‘Viewing Figures’ and includes new paintings of figures in and around London alongside my modern landscapes. The focus of the exhibition is on figures in different spaces and the viewer’s reaction to what they are seeing, hence the title of the show ‘Viewing Figures’. People who know my work will see some exciting new directions in the paintings and hopefully will enjoy this new show.
JS: You are known amongst collectors for your outstanding work in characteristic muted blue and grey tones. Can we expect any surprises in “Viewing Figures”?
JH: Yes, I am also including some new, boldly coloured pieces and some larger works on paper as well as a brand-new series of my smaller oil on canvas paintings of people in and around London.
JS: You have had a very successful 2019 so far. Can you share some of your highlights with Lady Wimbledon readers?
JH: It has been a hectic year to date but thrilling at the same time. I have been invited to show my work at some amazing exhibitions and events including at La Galleria Pall Mall, the Menier Gallery, the Affordable Art Fair in Hampstead with NoonPowell Fine Art and the 508 Kings Road Gallery in Chelsea where I am a resident artist. I have also been voted joint winner of the Royal Arts Prize Visitors Choice Award 2019 with artist Clare Law.
JS: Winning awards is always gratifying, but what does this mean to you personally as a respected artist?
JH: It was just so fantastic to be chosen for an award by members of the public. It is so rewarding as an artist when people like what you are creating and feel that it means something to them. I felt honoured that people came to the Royal Arts Prize show and voted for my work. I feel very lucky indeed to be able to do what I do and really appreciate all the wonderful support and feedback that I receive. Winning the award was simply the icing on the cake. Excitingly, as the joint winner of the Royal Prize, I have been invited to exhibit in the Royal Arts Prize Visitors Choice Award Show at the Royal Opera Arcade Gallery in March 2020.
JS: As well as exhibiting, you also find the time to complete commissions. What kind of works are commissioned?
JH: Commissions are often for people’s homes where clients have come to my shows and feel that they want an exciting, unique piece with which they also have a real personal connection. I always take time to ensure that I fully understand a client’s brief and the impact and atmosphere that they want the piece to create in order to ensure that they will be completely delighted with the paintings in their homes.
JS: As a Wimbledon artist you work closely with the community you live in. What projects are you involved with?
JH: My latest show at the Norman Plastow Gallery supports Wimbledon Guild, a local charity which provides help, advice and support to the people of Merton. I will be donating a percentage of my sales from “Viewing Figures” to the Guild and am also holding a Charity Preview supporting them on 20 September 2019.
‘Viewing Figures’ also forms part of the Merton Arts Festival where homes, studios and other gallery spaces are open to the public across Merton during the last two weekends of September.
Jo will be at the Norman Plastow Gallery with ‘Viewing Figures’ from 21 to 29 September 10-3 pm weekdays, 10-6 pm weekends. The Charity Preview is on Friday 20 September 10-12 noon. For more information about Jo and her work or, for an invite to the Charity Preview, visit Jo Holdsworth Events.
Written By: Janie Smith | Arts & Culture Editor