Jo Barker originally trained at Edinburgh College of Art, and works from her studio in Edinburgh whilst teaching as a lecturer at The Glasgow School of Art. Her initial abstract designs are collaged together on a computer from a combination of hand painted, drawn and inky marks. Colours are arranged in blocks, pools and smudges in overlapping layers. Employing this flowing way of designing is in complete contrast to the slow and intensive process of weaving. Wool, cotton and embroidery threads each have differing colour qualities. Combined, they offer a richness and depth of hue that continues to enchant, along with tapestry’s unique sensibility of surface texture and material construction.
‘A love of working with my hands: drawing, painting and making things; plus a long-term interest in colour are essentially at the heart of what I do. My compositions employ a range of marks, shapes and patterns which have evolved over a number of years, with recurring themes of ellipses, circles, halos; borders, edges and layers, creating a sense of movement and depth of field enhanced by reactions of particular colour combinations. The finished images are consciously abstract and ambiguous. I want to create a sense of something as opposed to an identifiable object or picture.’ – Jo Barker, 2017.
Public Collections include:
V&A, London; The House of Lords, London; National Museums Scotland, Edinburgh; Aberdeen Art Gallery; Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle; Scottish Executive, Edinburgh