This week Wales Arts Review casts a spotlight on the Welsh and Wales-based artists on the exhibition shortlist of Llandudno’s MOSTYN Open 21 award, a carefully selected list of 30 international artists from over 750 submissions. Next up is Jess Quinn.
Jess Quinn was born in the UK in the city of Bristol, her British father and American mother gave her dual nationality and an international childhood experience that has been an ongoing influence in her life with childhood summers split between the hills of North Wales and the beauty of Snowdonia to the vast flat farmlands of Indiana, from ice cold mountain rivers to the baking hot sands of lake Michigan and the city of Chicago. She gained a first class degree in Fine Art Painting from Glasgow School of Art before moving back to Bristol to raise her family. To support her young family Jess developed an online business selling soft sculpture Art dolls internationally with clients in Korea, Japan, Taiwan, America, Canada and Australia. This led to several years of work within the stop frame animation industry as a model maker specialising in textiles.
Throughout these years Jess continued to develop her painting until three years ago when she trained to teach Art in order to focus on her painting more fully, she is now represented by Kitteo contemporary in London and regularly exhibits at venues such as the affordable art fairs.
Her work often reflects the struggle to survive and create in a restrictive and often oppressive domestic space, the constant battle to reconcile child rearing with the making of Art. Her style reflects her interest in colour and pattern often associated with the ‘female’ or the ‘other’ the less sophisticated, her small scale illustrative approach also embraces these spaces whilst screaming out against the limitations imposed by such restrictions, the bright colours are often offset by a darkness or uneasiness. A variety of female characters inhabit her imagined worlds that are often a reimagined space within the history of painting. In 2019 Jess was shortlisted for the Mostyn Agored where her work will be exhibited from July.
This body of smaller works have been created in Japanese gouache on paper. They explore ideas around the experience of the female Artist, she appears in imaginary landscapes and interiors, sometimes walking through the paintings of history, inhabiting them on her own terms, this particular group of works explore influences ranging from Gauguin’s colour and landscapes and Surrealist painters such as Leonora Carrington and Remedios varo.
To find out more about MOSTYN Open 21 you can visit the gallery website here.
This week Wales Arts Review will be casting a spotlight on the other six Welsh or Wales-based artists on the competition exhibition shortlist. The announcement of the winners is on October 22nd.