JOY GREGORY

Invisible Life Force of Plants
15 September - 16 October


Chamomile [06092020]
2020, Unique Lumen Print [Silver Gelatin (RC)]
127x178mm



JOY GREGORY


Invisible Life Force of Plants
15 September - 16 October


See The Harrow workshop with the kids here.

For further reading go here.
The Invisible Life Force of Plants evolved from research Joy has been doing around economic botany in the 17th - 19th centuries and how everyday plants we associate with one place in reality came from another. During that period it was often for reasons of economic, power and pride, played out against the backdrop of transatlantic trade. These materials were transported around the globe for food, medicine, religion, beauty and love.  While plants are irreplaceable food resources for humans, we consume plants for other reasons as well. Many food species have a medicinal value due to the plethora of allelochemical compounds they possess. Mary Seacole, the British-Jamaican nurse and healer was known for her extensive use of indigenous herbal medicines.

“I was working through this idea, and during lockdown I took walks everyday and collected the plant matter I found. I would make prints of them, identify them with an app called PlantNet, record the names in both English and Latin, and date them. It became a botanical library of my walks and also a visual diary of a strange and surreal period. The thing that really struck me about working with the paper was that if the plant had any life left in it, it would create an aura around it that was almost like the plant was trying to breathe - it would leave its own invisible breath on the page graphically.”
Joy Gregory is a graduate of Manchester Polytechnic and the Royal College of Art. As an artist working with photography she is known for her concerns with issues of identity politics. Born in England to Jamaican parents she has always been fascinated by the impact of European history and colonisation on global perceptions of identity, memory, folk and traditional knowledge. As a photographer she makes full use of the media from video, digital and analogue photography to Victorian print processes.

Joy has worked in art education for almost three decades Including an appointment as an Honorary Research Associate at Slade School of Art [UCL] where she developed new work for the Diaspora Pavilion in the 57th Venice Biennale [2017.  In 2002, Gregory received the NESTA Fellowship, which enabled her the time to research for a major piece around language endangerment. Her work is in collections including the UK Arts Council Collection, Victoria and Albert Museum, Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia, and Yale British Art Collection. She currently teaches  fine art photography at Camberwell School of Art, the University of the Arts London.


“The thing that really struck me about working with the paper was that if the plant had any life left in it, it would create an aura around it that was almost like the plant was trying to breathe - it would leave its own invisible breath on the page graphically.”


Horse Chestnut [21082020]
2020, Unique Lumen Print [Silver Gelatin (RC)]
127x178mm

236 Westbourne Grove, London, W11 2RH
All rights reserved